The last week's worth of items on AOA

The long past, leaky present, and uncertain future of the Lincoln Park Pool

Lincoln Park Pool

Albany's Lincoln Park Pool will close out its current season on Labor Day. It's the 86th season the pool has been open as a place for people from the city and beyond to splash around, learn to swim, cool off, and relax on a summer day.

It's a landmark space. And it's near the end of its current life.

The pool first opened in 1931 and all those years are showing. It has cracked surfaces, operates below its designed capacity, and doesn't measure up to modern codes. Most notably, the pool simply struggles to hold water, leaking as much as 500,000 gallons a day.

That condition prompted a consultant hired by the city to conclude last fall that the Lincoln Park Pool has reached the end of its useful life and should be completely replaced.

The price tag for that? Maybe as much as $12 million.

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Checking out the new mural in downtown Albany that was just finished

Liz Zunon mural downtown Albany

We got a chance to stop in downtown Albany Thursday and see local artist Liz Zunon putting the final touches on her new mural along the wall for the Clinton Ave off ramp near the Quackenbush Garage.

The new work -- "Geraldine's Reverie" -- is the latest in a series of Capital Walls murals, a collaboration between the Albany Parking Authority, Albany Center Gallery, and Albany Barn. One of those earlier works -- the bluebirds mural by Michael Conlin on the side of the parking garage -- is more or less above the spot of the new work. (There's a sidewalk off Broadway that will take you right by it.)

Zunon is an accomplished children's book illustrator. And we got a chance to talk with her for a few minutes Thursday about what it was like to create something on a much larger scale.

Also: A handful of photos of the new mural.

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A bike ride and design tour around Albany's Corning Riverfront Park

Corning Riverfront Park bike path and pond

The LocalxDesign series has a bike tour of the Corning Riverfront Park September 12. Blurbage:

We are embarking on a 3 mile bike ride as we explore the park and discuss how the experience of the landscape has changed overtime. From the times of the Albany Basin, through creation of the Preserve, to recent cycling infrastructure improvements and possible future enhancements of the park we hope to learn about history of the space. We are informally partnering with the CDPHP Cycle! and attendees can either bring their own bikes or use the bikeshare. As of now we are not offering any special discounts on the bike rental, but CDTA will assist with making sure we have adequate number of the rental bikes at the Broadway docking station.
The tour will start from in front of the Stacks Espresso Bar at 488 Broadway, loop through the preserve, go by the USS Slater, and return to the starting point.

The meet-up time for the tour is 5:30 pm. It's free to attend, but registration is requested.

LocalXDesign is a monthly series of events focused on design projects in this area. Previous events this year have included tours of downtown Albany murals, the Empire State Plaza, and The Church artists/events space in Troy.

Its founders are Barbara Nazarewicz, a landscape architect, and Liz Podowski King, a landscape designer.

+ Walking the new (very, very, very green) multi-use path along Corning Riverfront Park
+ Connecting Albany's riverfront park

Stuff to do this weekend

capital district scottish games caber toss

It's Labor Day weekend, which means it's time to toss around the caber.

It's the last unofficial weekend of summer. Before the leaves begin to turn and the cider donuts begin appear, there is still some swimming to be done and ice cream stands to visit. Below you'll find a few ideas for squeezing the last drop from the season.

Doing something you don't see here? Share it with us in the comments.

And whatever you're doing, remember your sunscreen and have fantastic weekend.

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Wielrenner and fietser

Farther afield, but related to things here: There are a bunch of interesting bits in this interview between David Roberts and Modacity's Chris and Melissa Bruntlett about the flourishing everyday bike culture of the Netherlands and how it got that way. (It didn't just happen.) Among those bits: The Dutch have two words for people who ride bikes -- wielrenner (sport cyclists on road bikes with the gear and all that) and fietser (anyone on a bike who's pedaling around town for errands or whatever). [Vox]

Monster makeup class at Spa Little Theater

makeup curio composite 2

Jenn Dugan and some of her creations.

With an eye toward Halloween... Jenn Dugan -- owner of The Makeup Curio -- has a monster makeup class at the Spa Little Theater September 22. Blurbage:

Join us on Saturday, September 22nd to learn how to transform into Frankenstein's monster with this hands-on makeup workshop. Learn how to build a cut (see Frank's forehead), paint your face and add highlights and shadows to create a realistic look straight from the laboratory. Not appropriate for those with skin sensitivities. ... All are welcome, ages 12 to 99+ • Pre-registration required • Space is limited.

Registration is $15 and available online.

Jenn Dugan opened The Makeup Curio last year in Schenectady. It specializes in both beauty makeup and special effects makeup. Dugan's a makeup artist and costume designer. We talked with her last October about makeup, theater, and... zombies.

The Spa Little Theater is in Saratoga Spa State Park. And this October Home Made Theater will be staging a production of Young Frankenstein there.

Cuomo/Nixon debate, Heaven Puleski indicted, standoff in Troy, man shot by police on FB Live suing city/police, battle over Nipper building

Andrew Cuomo and Cynthia Nixon faced off in a gubernatorial debate Wednesday. Both candidates expressed support for legalized marijuana, single-payer health and campaign finance reform but Nixon positioned herself as a political outsider and criticized Cuomo's record on LGBTQ issues and education funding, while Cuomo touted his experience saying the job is "not about advocacy. It's about doing."
The debate was less than civil at times with accusations of lying and interruptions, and as Chris Churchill points out, upstate was largely ignored in the overall discussion. [StateOfPolitics][TU][NYT][Politico][TU]

Before the debate, Cuomo released a new ad showing Nixon praising him as governor and Nixon released one comparing Cuomo to Trump. [TU]

Puleski indicted
Heaven Puleski, the mother of Rayen Puleski, whose remains are believed to have been found buried in a Schenectady backyard, was indicted by a grand jury, the unsealed indictment is like to include charges of tampering with physical evidence and concealment of a human corpse. The investigation into how the infant died is still ongoing, and police are waiting for the results of an autopsy. [WNYT][Spectrum][TU]

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Day trip: The Amazing World of Dr. Seuss and the Springfield Museums

Springfield Museums Seuss exterior

By Danielle Sanzone

Oh, the places you'll go... Springfield, Massachusetts, for example.

The home of the Basketball Hall of Fame. The home of that new MGM casino. One of the country's many Springfields where The Simpsons might live in their fictional world.

And it's the home of a complex called the Springfield Museums.

It's an easy 1.5 hour drive to Springfield from Albany along I-90 and then I-91. Yet, somehow I had never really heard much about these museums until the relatively new Amazing World of Dr. Seuss Museum opened as part of the Springfield Museums.

Once you finish exploring the complex, you might find, as Dr. Seuss would say, "you're in pretty good shape for the shape that you are in!"

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What's up in the Neighborhood

The NeighborhoodAmong the topics in this most recent spin around the Capital Region's online neighborhood: soft serve ice cream around Schenectady, August in Saratoga, church cook books, the Annual Albany Waffle Frolic, the "Stanford could have been in Albany" story, the Cranberry Lake 50, a succession of plants, Barrington Stage, catcalling, media habits, school supply shopping, and goats.


Albany Barn in post ad 2018

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APD says teen shot by police was wielding knife, Cuomo/Nixon to debate tonight, Spa City walk/vigil highlight contribution of immigrants

Albany police involved shooting
Albany police say Ellazar Williams, the teen who was paralyzed last week after being shot by officers, ran at them with a knife before the shooting and refused to drop the weapon. The officer who shot Williams was named in brutality claims in 2004 and 2005. Albany police apparently have video of the incident. [TU][WNYT]

Cuomo / Nixon
Cynthia Nixon and Andrew Cuomo are set to debate tonight. The debate will air on CBS.[TU]

Stephanie Miner
After three people with ties to the Democratic Party challenged her petitions to run on the Serve America Movement party, independent gubernatorial candidate and former Syracuse Mayor Stephanie Miner is blaming Andrew Cuomo . [TU]

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Crossing the Black Bridge

Black Bridge Cohoes Green Island

We finally got a chance to check out the new paved path in Green Island that leads up to the southern end of the Black Bridge. And short story short: it's nice.

The Black Bridge is worth checking out sometime if you haven't already. There's a small parking lot at the end of Cannon Street on the Green Island side, and it's a short pedal from downtown Troy via the Green Island Bridge.

The bridge connects Green Island and Van Schaick Island in Cohoes across one of the Mohawk River's curling paths into the Hudson River. And it's part of a multi-use path that connects Green Island, Van Schaick Island, Peebles Island, and Waterford. The roughly two-mile corridor -- the Delaware Ave path in Cohoes -- is a nice walk or pedal as you pass by the fairways of the Van Schaick Island Country Club, the Van Schaick Mansion, a bunch of new residential developments in Cohoes, the old Matton Shipyard, cross the bridge onto the northern end of Peebles Island, and then cross another bridge over to Waterford with a view of the locks.

The setting is beautiful -- and a little bit wild. Late Sunday afternoon we glided past a deer and saw a bald eagle from the Black Bridge.

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From Stewart International to Europe and back for less than $300

Norwegian Air Stewart International Airport service map

A clip from Norwegian's online map showing destinations from Stewart (many of these routes include connections)

Noted: Norwegian Air flies to Europe from Stewart International Airport in the Hudson Valley. And it has a sale right now in which it's offering one-way tickets from SWF to three destinations for as low as $100 during the winter. (Roundtrip total of roughly $250 after taxes and whatnot.) Those destinations: Dublin, Shannon (Ireland), and Edinburgh.

That sale also covers other Norwegian Air airports in the Northeast such as JFK, Newark, and Boston. Those one-way tickets are more in the $150 range (about $350 roundtrip), but they include destinations such as Amsterdam, London, Paris, and Madrid.

Norwegian started flying out of Stewart last summer. It flies to five European destinations direct from SWF, and 15 in total -- among them Barcelona, Copenhagen, Paris, and Prague. Scanning through the roundtrip tickets for the next few months, it looks like a lot of those flights are in the $400-$500 range.

Have you taken Norwegian from Stewart or caught one of its fare sales? We're curious about how it was.

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Warehouse District development drama

At the beginning of August Mike DeMasi reported that the developer behind the mixed-use renovation of the former liquor warehouse at 960 Broadway and the planned redev of the Nipper Building in the Warehouse District admitted he'd taken on too much, fallen behind, and was trying to get things back on track. Now there's word the developer is facing a lawsuit from investors. [Biz Review x2]

"Influence of the Dutch on the American Kitchen" at Ten Broeck Mansion and Crailo

Ten Broeck Mansion Albany exterior 2018-June

Culinary historian Peter G. Rose will be at the Ten Broeck Mansion in Albany September 9 to talk about the influence of the Dutch on American cooking. The event will then head over to the Crailo State Historic Site in Rensselaer for a live historic cooking demonstrations.

Rose is a noted historian of the Dutch influence on the cooking and cuisine of this part of the world. Originally from The Netherlands, she's written books such as The Sensible Cook: Dutch Foodways in the Old and the New World. And her latest book is Delicious December: How the Dutch Brought Us Santa, Presents, and Treats. She's given talks previously at a handful of spots in this area, including the State Museum.

Tickets for the two-site event are $20 and available online. Space is limited and "pre-registration is strongly encouraged."

Earlier: What did Albany eat in the 18th century?

Lift Off! workshop for video game development

Tech Valley Game Space Lift Off logo

The Tech Valley Game Space is starting up a new free program -- Lift Off! -- with the goal of keeping the field of video game creation open to a wide range of people. Blurbage:

Lift Off is a free, inclusive, six-week program for self-identified women and non-binary participants to make their first game; no coding or other game development experience needed! This diversity-focused workshop series invites selected applicants of varied backgrounds and interests to create their own game. Participants will learn and practice the skill sets involved in making a game, from design, art, coding, audio composition and more. ...
Have you ever wanted to make a game, but felt uncertain about how to get started? You're not alone. Lift Off is designed for people just like you, because the truth is that you absolutely can make a game! Apply today, and take the first step toward bringing your game idea to life with support from our team of experienced mentors and the friendly community at Tech Valley Game Space.

The workshop meets on a series of Saturday afternoons between September and November at the Tech Valley Center of Gravity in downtown Troy (30 3rd Street). That link above includes an application form and other details.

The deadline to apply is September 8 at midnight.

Earlier: The goal: For everyone in the Capital Region to make a video game

Layoffs at GlobalFoundries, questioning oversight of Saratoga Springs police, Pinhead Susan's for sale, George the turkey is missing

Layoffs at GlobalFoundries
+ GlobalFoundries is laying off hundreds of employees in Malta as part of a companywide strategy change on the manufacturing the next generation of computer chips. The Malta site has had about 3,300 employees recently. [Biz Review]
+ The company's direction change could also have implications for work -- and jobs -- at the SUNY Poly campus in Albany, Larry Rulison notes in a big-picture view of what's happening. [TU]

Saratoga Springs police and the death of Darryl Mount Jr.
+ Following the Times Union story this past weekend that revealed Saratoga Springs police didn't pursue an internal investigation of the death of Darryl Mount Jr. -- despite the police chief saying it did -- the city's public safety commissioner said a civilian review board was unnecessary and "would create another layer of bureaucracy that create more negatives than positives." [TU]
+ From a Daily Gazette editorial regarding the Times Union story and the case: "In a case like that, it's in the best interests of the citizens to take the investigation out of the hands of police and give it to an authority that isn't akin to allowing the fox to guard the hen house." [Daily Gazette]
+ Chris Churchill: "Call me naive, but I still like to believe that police chiefs should have more credibility than the average baby-kisser. When they speak, we should be able to trust what they say. We want to believe our police. [Police chief Gregory] Veitch has lost that trust, which makes it fair to wonder whether he can continue as chief." [TU]

Investigation into Albany police shooting of man
+ Acting Albany police chief Michael Basile said Monday there isn't an exact timeline for completing the investigation of the situation in which department detectives shot Ellazar Williams following a foot chase last week. Williams arraigned in the hospital Monday on charges of felony menacing a police officer and misdemeanor possession of a weapon. [TU] [Spectrum]
+ Center for Law and Justice executive director Alice Green, who's been critical of the department's transparency level on this case, after a meeting with police and community leaders Monday: "Having a meeting like this was very helpful and very useful." [News10]

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Today's moment of summer

corn field closeup Kinderhook

Stopped by the farm stand at the Altobelli Farm in Kinderhook this past week to pick up a few ears of corn. Then took a moment to peek at where the corn comes from.

NYS Writers Institute visiting writers fall 2018

nyswi visiting writers 2018 covers

The fall lineup for the NYS Writers Institute visiting writers series is out. And it is again full of high-profile authors, actors, artists, and other creators talking talking about all sorts of topics.

The visiting writers series is in addition to the Albany Book Festival September 28-29 at UAlbany, which has its own stacked lineup of authors.

Here's a scan of the upcoming visiting writers schedule, which starts off the first week of September...

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This unexplainable thing in the air

From a conversation with Chobani founder (and UAlbany alum) Hamdi Ulukaya, about starting up the company at an old yogurt plant in Chenango County, hiring immigrants, corporate responsibility, and the United States: "This magic that still exists in this country, this cannot be taught to someone. This cannot be implemented by the political system. Someone as strange as me can come to upstate New York and say: 'You know what? I can bring that yogurt factory back.' There's this unexplainable thing in the air that this country has. If it is damaged, this would be the saddest thing." [NYT]

Michelle Wolf at Albany Funny Bone

comedian Michelle Wolf

Comedian Michelle Wolf will be at the Albany Funny Bone for a two stand-up shows this Sunday, September 2. The shows are at 7 pm (sold out) and 9:45 pm -- tickets are $35.

Wolf got a lot of attention earlier this year for her performance at the White House Correspondents' Dinner in which she set pretty much everyone on blast, especially the Trump administration.

The former Daily Show contributor also hosted a show at Netflix this year. And she has an HBO comedy special premiering in December.

Aziz Ansari
Aziz Ansari is also playing a handful of shows at the Albany Funny Bone Tuesday and Wednesday -- but they're all sold out.

photo: Mindy Tucker

Here's the fall season for the Arts Center's "Social Media" crafts-and-drinks series

arts center capital region troy exterior

The popular "Social Media" drinks-and-arts series at the Arts Center of the Capital Region is back for a new season starting next week. Blurbage:

Each event provides an opportunity to try something new in our state of the art studios. Etch prints, throw on the wheel, make sweet treats, and much more! Every event includes a complimentary cocktail, so come over, get creative, and get social!

A schedule is below. This season also includes a few classes at the University Club in Albany.

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The Tudors

Chris Churchill checks in on the status of the vacant Tudor-style houses along Holland Ave in Albany (map), which are now available for free -- if you're willing to move them. [TU]

Matisyahu at Troy Music Hall

musician Matisyahu 2018

Matsiyahu is set to play a show at the Troy Music Hall November 1. Tickets go on sale to the general public this Thursday, August 30 -- they're $29.50 and up.

Tour blurbage: "On this tour, he performs acoustic versions of his chart-topping songs, including two of his biggest hits, "King Without A Crown" and "One Day". ... Matisyahu presents his music in its most raw form, allowing his voice and beat-boxing, paired with inventive guitar arrangements, to expand through a lyrical intensity and musical improvisation. This format naturally digs deep into the meaning of the songs themselves, and lays Matisyahu's spiritual journey bare, fostering a closeness to the artist-fan relationship."

And, as you might remember, Matisyahu played Alive at Five this past June.

photo: Chris Townsend

Saratoga Springs police and the death of Darryl Mount Jr, tracking the life of Rayen Puleski, Kirsten Gillibrand town hall, Travers winner

Saratoga Springs police and the death of Darryl Mount Jr.
Following the injury and death of Darryl Mount Jr. following a foot chase with police in Saratoga Springs in August 2013, police and city officials in Saratoga Springs rejected calls for an outside investigation and pointed to an internal review that found no police misconduct -- but as Barbara Lombardo reports, the city's police chief admitted in a deposition that there was never any internal investigation. [TU]

Tracking the life of Rayen Puleski
Jake Lahut and Steven Cook attempted to the track the life of Rayen Puleski, the infant who had gone missing in July and whose suspected body was found behind a State Street residence in Schenectady. "Through more than a dozen interviews conducted by The Daily Gazette in the days since Rayen's body was found, a picture has emerged of his short life, which was marked by moves between motels, run-down buildings and multiple attempts, including at least two by Child Protective Services, to get help for the infant and his mother." [Daily Gazette]

Gun violence in Albany
+ Albany police say they're investigating the shooting of a 42-year-old man around the 200 block of Central Ave early Sunday morning. APD says the man did not have life-threatening injuries. It's asking anyone with info to call. [APD]
+ At an Albany NAACP forum on gun violence at the Albany Public Library Washington Ave Branch Saturday, panelists talked about the factors that feed into the violence, including poverty and hopelessness. [Spectrum]

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The week ahead

tri-city valleycats night game at the joe

The ValleyCats wrap up their home regular season this week.

Here are a few things to keep in mind, look forward to, or keep busy with this week, from the weather (sunny), to baseball, to county fairs, to outdoor movies, to nanotech, to swimming, to music...


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Weekend Destination: Long Island

Long Island weekend composite Julie Madsen

By Julie Madsen

A lot of people from this area take a beach vacation in Cape Cod or at the Jersey Shore, passing by a prime beach area right in our home state of New York!

Long Island is a special place. It is the longest and largest island in the contiguous 48 states -- 118 miles long and 23 miles from north to south.

You can find Gatsby-level luxury on the north shore, laid back vibes of the south shore, and farmlands out east. Also: all of the bagels you can eat.

There are a bunch of towns and beaches to explore, with so many activities...

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Recent Comments

They should turn Maiden Lane into a stepped pedestrian street, like they have all over Europe. We don't need to reinvent the wheel, they do steep small streets pretty well across the pond, let's look for some precedents... Human scaled lighting is critical too, that goes for the whole city. And we don't need paint on the road, just signage perpendicular to the flow of traffic at the bridge entrance. I also echo the call for basic, ongoing maintenance to our current infrastructure. How about some weed removal in sidewalks, etc?

Memories of a good dog

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