Wishing neighbors a happy, cozy and healthy autumn-winter season.

Lack of inertia since last winter meant the delay in gathering news for you earlier in the year. Maybe the glorious extended fall color awakened me to gather a few items about what’s happening in our neighborhood.

The number of newcomers– renters, day-trippers and second home buyers– continue to change our social landscape. So property prices are rising, new businesses opening and more houses posting for-sale signs on their lawns.

Less than a year ago, before Covid invaded the nation, many Catskill residents speculated that the money and energy fueling renovation of old properties by developers would soon end. Some of us viewed with skepticism the rush to invest in high-end luxury hotels and new rustic cafes, and to convert colorless neglected homes into comfy, sought-after Airbnb lodgings. But demand has grown rather than dwindle as city residents from downstate radically changed their lifestyle and rushed into our hills. To escape the threats of Covid infection in the city, families paid $7000. a month or more for a house in our neighborhood!

          Many part-time visitors decided to move up here permanently, or to spend their summer in the woods and on our waterways rather than fly to Disneyland or beyond. 

          Hard to know how long the trend will continue. Hopefully these changes will help boost employment among longtime residents.

Roscoe’s business community has not flourished as much as Livingston Manor’s, but there’s reason to be optimistic.

Red Rose Motel and Tavern in Cooks Falls was open part of the summer; we wait to see how they can manage indoors during the coming months.

The Roscoe Motel is under new management and expects to be open throughout the winter, observing Covid-safety measures. Speaking to Rachael, one of the owners, she notes they were fully booked last weekend.   

Riverside Café on the Beaverkill four miles beyond Cooks Falls is surviving and plans to be open all Thanksgiving weekend serving dinner from Wednesday to Sunday.

Java Love Café, the charming tiny log cabin on main street (Stewart Ave) is a mystery, open sporadically, and with limited choices. When I passed by there last week, I saw a For Sale sign on its door.

Roscoe town itself is looking somewhat less empty: Kaso’s, a new Greek restaurant opened on Stewart Ave. ( 8am to 8pm daily; closed Tuesdays) with dining facilities on the sidewalk. And Joey B’s, a few meters away, has taken the space occupied by Casey’s Café. (Open 8 am to 3, so far, also open Sundays.)  Up the street, a new shop, Feeney’s Fabulous Finds, is located next to Annie’s Place.

It’s still unclear what will occupy the old Wayne Bank property where renovations have been going on for many months. Some say we’ll find an upscale restaurant opening there.

Prohibition Distillery has a new name —Do Good. The owner announced that he renamed it in honor of his deceased friend, a former US military ‘sniper’ in Iraq. An odd moral message from the failed and illegal military adventure.

Staying with the subject of guns, the hunting supplies outlet in midtown was renovated and will reopen as another gun shop—Brothers Arms.

The popular Brandenburg Bakery in Livingston Manor has closed. It seems the new owner plans another bakery on the same premises. (The November issue of Manor Ink has more to say on this.)

Try to secure a copy of Manor Ink; it’s is a really nice local paper produced by Liv Manor High School students and Liv Manor Library staff. Its quality improves year by year, the latest issue extending to 24 pages, with features on Sull Cty history, migration and economic trends, and interviews with political candidates.  

          Our local libraries are open by on different schedules because of Covid safety rules. Roscoe Library is open but with limited hours: Tues, Thurs and Sat. 10am-12 and 1-3pm.

           Roscoe’s Presbyterian Church managed their autumn Penny Social in September—a successful event. Their annual Christmas Sale will be on Nov. 28 and Dec. 5.

          Cooks Falls Fire Hall has been quiet since last winter. Besides a summer outdoor take-away chicken Bar-B-Q, there’ve been no breakfast or other fund-raising events.

          Finally, moving on to the recent election, our Congressional District 42’s representative Antonio Delgado is celebrating a clear victory. The many local supporters of Senator Jen Metzger had to wait 3 weeks beyond election day– until more than 25,000 mail-in ballots were tabulated– to learn Senator Metzger failed to prevail over her challenger. Mike Martucci will take her seat in Albany starting in January.

          As for Delaware Cty in general, The Walton Reporter (Nov 11 issue) front page announced “GOP sweeps Delaware County Elections”. As we saw across the nation, many more registered voters caste their ballot (79% in Delaware County, or 22,674, surpassing the 2016 count of 18,303.)  

Not to be overlooked is the abundance of colorful celebratory lights decorating homes and lawns early this season . Above: Rodney Harder’s dazzling Cooks Falls winter “Fire Fall”.

This is a privately produced news-sheet by BN Aziz of Cooksfalls who takes responsibility for any errors and editorial biases.