Catskills weekend, part TWO .. ..

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ellen4641
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2007/09/13 10:11:08 (permalink)

Catskills weekend, part TWO .. ..

after 2 nights at Kutshers Resort in Monticello, NY , I'm ready to
escape! (and do some more exploring on my own driving around)
Sun. Aug 26th. The final 3rd night I will stay up in Roscoe, NY ...

revisited some of my favorite old stomping grounds ; little towns like South Fallsburg and Loch Sheldrake... (they are a shell of their former selves)


about 1/2 the businesses in downtown Monticello are boarded up

However, there are some bright spots.... this is a new additional location of Cohens Bakery. (the original is still going strong in Ellenville, that town named after me)
(but it's not the Cohen family that owns it anymore; sold 2 years ago)
I took out a bobka and some of their famous pumpernickel raisin bread.

the yellow sign in front says "pastrami and corned beef sandwiches", but nothing to get excited about , as I found out it's just Boars Head brand...
note the bagel bakery in back right , with blue awning...
same location since at least 1978 , and with the same great tasting bagels

note the sign on the side of Cohens .."get your concert food here". (all kinds of sandwich pack specials)
It is meant for the thousands of people that are heading to weekend concerts at former spot of 1969 Woodstock. It's now called the Bethel Performing Arts Center.

next up is the village of South Fallsburg

note the "sox place" on left; it's "Murray's Kosher Socks"...
something about the fabric somehow makes it Kosher, yes, Kosher socks!!
it used to be bustling with the secular Jewish crowd, etc, but now it is mostly ultra Orthodox Jewish and Hasidic people and businesses,(who tend to keep to themselves more) and one small Spanish restaurant.

this is the former Rivoli Theatre, used for drama club events, etc

and here's the street scene ; we're still in downtown South Fallsburg
...many of the Hasidic Jews from Brooklyn come up to the Catskills for the summer

here's the Pines Hotel in South Fallsburg, shuttered since 1999.
So it's "nobody's choice" for a vacation now. I enjoyed a few stays there , once for a singles weekend




here's the view of the Concord Hotel located on Kiamesha Lake.
Looks like a thriving place, huh?!?


on closer inspection, though, one can see the rotting buildings!
As the Concord closed in 1998




the only thing still open is the Concord golf course...
along with Grossingers Golf Course...(they were always privately owned anyway)

this sign is so nice that it makes it appear that the hotels are perhaps open and thriving , as well...(not the case)
the signage still remains for the Red Barn Steak House, even though it's been closed for over 25 years!
I had a fun dinner there back around 1980, (and you know I love my steaks!) when a bunch of us Grossingers cocktail waitresses went there to celebrate a gals b-day

anyone remember the Stevensville Hotel in Swan Lake?
This has what's become of it. It is now called "swan lake resort hotel"...(looks like it needs to buy a few vowels, etc)..
supposed to be open mostly for groups; however it did'nt look good, as there were only 2 cars in front of the place on a late August day

many have enjoyed a show at the Stevensville "Starlight Room" in past


next I head past the town of White Lake

I'm on my way to the former home of the 1969 Woodstock concert in Bethel. Last year it opened as a performing arts center with a "harvest festival" going on every Sunday from late Aug. til Oct.

The name of the band is "For the Love of Music"....and I love a band with a horn section..
I had always been neutral to pesto.....it never did much for me one way or another. Guess that's cause I just never had pesto like this before

This is "buddha pesto"... it changed my whole outlook on pesto.
After sampling , I wanted to buy a bottle, but he had run out. I plan on ordering from his website. A friendly guy deserves some business

anybody for a "champagne crabcake"?

I had a burger and a hot dog, good charbroiled taste


As I was leaving the concert grounds area, there were already cars having "tailgating" parties/picnics on the grassy parking spots..
(almost like Woodstock all over again; well , almost anyway)
Apparently they were early arrivals for the Lynyrd Skynyrd/Marshall Tucker concert that was going to happen there that night.
(I like both those bands, almost went to the concert , too!

I left the area for the next town over, Kaueneonga Lake...
where the little downtown has undergone a complete makeover.
It's been real beat up (and mostly shuddered stores) for over 20 years already...
The "Fat Lady Cafe" is one of the new additions, with a very creative, upscale menu.
The owner, Judy was one of the speakers at our History of the Catskills Conference at Kutshers. (she talked about the "rebirth" of Kaueneonga Lake


I first went to look for a bungalow colony that I had stayed at back in junior high school when a friend invited me to stay there for a week in the summer time..
I found the place, Mintzs' bungalow colony....but it was bittersweet, as it had been taken over by the ultra Orthodox/Hasidic

I was grateful that they did make note on their sign , that it was once Mintzs'..(I had my suspicions about Mintzs still being around, as they were showing up in the phonebooks, etc the last few years)
I discovered this Schwarma place, which was near downtown Monticello.
They told me that they close for the season after Labor Day.

I had to fight the crowds inside, but my chicken schwarma was well worth it. They had a great toppings bar, as well. I like the way the man sliced the chicken then threw it on the grill...it tasted hot and crispy..


I stopped for 10 minutes to check out the Monticello Raceway Casino.
they just have slot machines there; table games like blackjack are supposed still be a couple of years away

then I drove 10 miles north to the town of Liberty.
Used to work at Grossingers there. It's been closed since 1986.
(just the golf course is open)
Most of the buildings have been demolished. However, the Jenny G. hotel building still survives. It's on the left ...

the golf course is meticulously maintained

the indoor pool building still survives, but the pool is rotting away;
suffers from neglect..

still brings back memories just seeing it, as lived in the staff quarters right up the hill from the indoor pool...
I drove from Liberty east on route 52 to Loch Sheldrake,
home of Sullivan County comm. College
The "Hippodrome" movie theatre has been long shuttered.

Bum and Kels Restaurant and Bar is in far right. The owner was standing outside , and I schmoozed with him for a good 10 minutes or so. He said how things really fell apart for his restaurant after the big resorts closed. (he loved when the waiters and bellhops, etc would come down to his bar, cause they had $$ to spend)
He said the Monticello Raceway casino has actually hurt him, cause many of the locals now run over to that casino to get their free (not exactly) gifts/rebates, etc...(nothings really free; they usually had to put something in a slot machine to earn points)

then I drove 10 more miles north to the little town named Roscoe, known for their fishing.
I stayed at the Roscoe Motel for $55.00, and the mattresses were more comfortable than Kutshers. And I even had towels awaiting me in my room!!

you could literally cast your fishing pole right from my back window of my motel room into the Beaverkill River


That night I enjoyed a decent prime rib dinner (with salad bar) at a rustic restaurant called the Rockland House, just a few miles from my motel..

the little village of Roscoe is very well kept


unlike the village of Parksville, (between Liberty and Roscoe) that is decrepit


the signage still remains for Poppy's Pancake House, even though it has been closed for about 30 years. I remember going there back in the 70's with that junior high school friend and her parents.







#1

38 Replies Related Threads

    CajunKing
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    RE: Catskills weekend, part TWO .. .. 2007/09/13 13:50:05 (permalink)
    OOOOOOOOH Bobka

    I would love to be eating some bobka right now.

    It looks like you had a great trip, thanks for the pix & report.
    #2
    John A
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    RE: Catskills weekend, part TWO .. .. 2007/09/13 17:40:06 (permalink)
    Thanks Ellen. Another one of your great trip reports.
    #3
    Greymo
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    RE: Catskills weekend, part TWO .. .. 2007/09/13 17:56:43 (permalink)
    Great photos..............I used to love that area. I can still remember a wonderful convention that I attended at The Concord. The food was "so so" and the rooms quite dreadful but the atmosphere and "people watching", along with the cheesy nightclub acts and the dancing classes, made it a great experience.
    #4
    morningglory
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    RE: Catskills weekend, part TWO .. .. 2007/09/13 18:55:17 (permalink)
    Ellen,

    Great report, pictures and sharing your visit with us all. Thanks!
    #5
    Twinwillow
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    RE: Catskills weekend, part TWO .. .. 2007/09/13 20:38:07 (permalink)
    Ellen, you truly have to be the "backbone" of this site. Without a doubt, your pictures and accompanying reports are the "best of the best". Please continue your interesting reports on your various travels. They almost makes me feel like I'm there with you
    I'm sure others must feel the same as me.
    Thank you.
    #6
    ellen4641
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    RE: Catskills weekend, part TWO .. .. 2007/09/13 20:44:56 (permalink)
    quote:
    Originally posted by twinwillow

    Ellen, you truly have to be the "backbone" of this site. Without a doubt, your pictures and accompanying reports are the "best of the best". Please continue your interesting reports on your various travels. They almost makes me feel like I'm there with you
    I'm sure others must feel the same as me.
    Thank you.

    thank you, Michael, you're beautiful...!
    (and one day we just might meet up for a steak in Dallas or some chicken parm in Brooklyn!)

    #7
    aleswench
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    RE: Catskills weekend, part TWO .. .. 2007/09/13 22:41:25 (permalink)
    OH Ellen - you brought back such memories for me!! Long story short - bed time right now - but my family had a summer home in Trout Creek, NY and every trip up we'd stop at the Roscoe Diner- I could cry at such memories of it all. They had THE best french toast - made thick with Challah bread - oh now I have to go back. Man I wish I had seen this and told you to go there....Sue

    ps. That was such a huge part of my childhood that I haven't thought about in a long time - Trout Creek - oh if I could only buy it back...
    #8
    Twinwillow
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    RE: Catskills weekend, part TWO .. .. 2007/09/14 00:37:40 (permalink)
    quote:
    Originally posted by ellen4641


    thank you, Michael, you're beautiful...!
    (and one day we just might meet up for a steak in Dallas or some chicken parm in Brooklyn!)



    Anytime, Ellen. I'll write you again, personally.
    #9
    Twinwillow
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    RE: Catskills weekend, part TWO .. .. 2007/09/14 00:49:09 (permalink)
    Ellen, you mentioned your "bittersweet" visit to Mintz's bungalow colony after so many years had passed since you were there last.
    I grew up on Long Island in Cedarhurst (the 5 towns) during the fifties and sixties. It was a fantastic community with a mostly (reform) Jewish population. Now, most all of the area has completely changed due to the influx of ultra orthodox and Hasidic Jews.
    All I can say is, "I feel your pain".
    #10
    zataar
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    RE: Catskills weekend, part TWO .. .. 2007/09/14 13:06:23 (permalink)
    I don't think I've ever read a trip report quite like yours, Ellen. It was bittersweet as you stated. You should consider writing an expanded version and give it to "This American Life" on NPR to produce.
    #11
    kland01s
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    RE: Catskills weekend, part TWO .. .. 2007/09/14 13:58:48 (permalink)
    quote:
    Originally posted by zataar

    I don't think I've ever read a trip report quite like yours, Ellen. It was bittersweet as you stated. You should consider writing an expanded version and give it to "This American Life" on NPR to produce.


    That's a great idea! Perfect for that program!
    #12
    rongmtek
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    RE: Catskills weekend, part TWO .. .. 2007/09/14 14:23:26 (permalink)
    I have to agree with the comments posted here, Ellen. This is much more than a photo-essay of your trip. Thanks for sharing so many of the feelings and memories that this voyage brought about, in a quiet but deep way.
    I have some personal history with that area, too; and I still think that NY RT-17 through the Catskills is one of the most beautiful drives in the US.
    I think it's obvious that your efforts and spirit are well-appreciated in this online community.
    Ron
    #13
    tamandmik
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    RE: Catskills weekend, part TWO .. .. 2007/09/14 15:51:16 (permalink)
    quote:
    Originally posted by twinwillow

    Ellen, you truly have to be the "backbone" of this site. Without a doubt, your pictures and accompanying reports are the "best of the best". Please continue your interesting reports on your various travels. They almost makes me feel like I'm there with you
    I'm sure others must feel the same as me.
    Thank you.


    I agree, between Ellen, and the Wanderingjew, these trip reports are the highlights of the entire roadfood forum.
    #14
    Twinwillow
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    RE: Catskills weekend, part TWO .. .. 2007/09/14 20:02:43 (permalink)
    Further to this wonderful report, There is a book titled, "It happened in the Catskills" by Myrna Katz Frommer
    and Harvey Frommer. Published by Harcourt Brace. It's a MUST READ for anyone who has a memory of the Catskills.
    Or, who is interested in reading about how, when and who was there from the beginning to the end.
    It's chock full of anecdotes from employee's, guest's, hotel owner's and the never ending list of entertainers.
    You won't believe how many entertainers (and who) got their start in the Catskills. I have attached the link to Amazon's web page for this book. I realize that's like a "commercial" but, in this case it's worth it.
    A truly great read! I know I couldn't put it down. It's a large format soft cover also loaded with pictures.
    Enjoy!
    www.amazon.com/s/ref=nb_ss_gw/105-1453879-5452464?initialSearch=1&url=search-alias%3Daps&field-keywords=It+Happened+in+the+Catskills&x=14&y=18
    #15
    ellen4641
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    RE: Catskills weekend, part TWO .. .. 2007/09/14 20:23:57 (permalink)
    thank you all so very much.........and to be thought of in the same light as "Wandering Jews" trip reports is the highest form of flattery.

    I enjoy really putting my heart into my trip reports....
    and on the internet it will be chronicled indefinitely...
    we can all reflect on it, plus random people googling "catskills" nostalgia may come across it.. (and hopefully get a nice perspective on things)

    I'm already looking forward to next Augusts' "14th annual History of the Catskills" conference at Kutshers. (one does not even have to stay at the hotel; one can just pay for each seminar, or all of them, and pay for one or more meals in the dining room. I'm going back for the Sat. prime rib) And maybe just staying 1 night at Kutshers, and the rest at that Roscoe Motel...

    I find that doing this trip reports, and responding to other Roadfooders posts is a good healthy way to channel some of my energy.
    I just starting dating a new guy 3 weeks ago (3 dates in 3 weeks)
    and I need to keep myself busy in-between dates...(instead of just getting my mind all caught up in him) (and Roadfood is a healthy outlet to express myself and vent a little) That and taking jogs outside.

    Cause most of you have proven to be loyal Roadfood buddies!!

    I'll even see some of you on the NJ hot dog tour tomorrow!

    ellen








    #16
    Twinwillow
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    RE: Catskills weekend, part TWO .. .. 2007/09/14 20:34:24 (permalink)
    Ellen, you must get that book I mentioned in my last post. If I hadn't already given it to someone a while back, I would have loved to have sent it to you.
    #17
    Twinwillow
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    RE: Catskills weekend, part TWO .. .. 2007/09/14 20:37:29 (permalink)
    quote:
    Originally posted by ellen4641

    thank you all so very much.........and to be thought of in the same light as "Wandering Jews" trip reports is the highest form of flattery.

    I enjoy really putting my heart into my trip reports....
    and on the internet it will be chronicled indefinitely...
    we can all reflect on it, plus random people googling "catskills" nostalgia may come across it.. (and hopefully get a nice perspective on things)

    I'm already looking forward to next Augusts' "14th annual History of the Catskills" conference at Kutshers. (one does not even have to stay at the hotel; one can just pay for each seminar, or all of them, and pay for one or more meals in the dining room. I'm going back for the Sat. prime rib) And maybe just staying 1 night at Kutshers, and the rest at that Roscoe Motel...

    I find that doing this trip reports, and responding to other Roadfooders posts is a good healthy way to release some of my energy.
    I just starting dating a new guy 3 weeks ago (3 dates in 3 weeks)
    and I need to keep myself busy in-between dates...(instead of just getting my mind all caught up in him) (and Roadfood is a healthy outlet to express myself and vent a little) That and taking jogs outside.

    Cause most of you have proven to be loyal Roadfood buddies!!

    I'll even see some of you on the NJ hot dog tour tomorrow!

    ellen



    I'm jealous!
    #18
    ellen4641
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    RE: Catskills weekend, part TWO .. .. 2007/09/14 20:47:44 (permalink)
    quote:
    Originally posted by twinwillow

    Ellen, you must get that book I mentioned in my last post. If I hadn't already given it to someone a while back, I would have loved to have sent it to you.

    yes, it IS a great book, "it happened in the catskills"..
    I have it right here on my shelf, plus those other ones that are in that "catskills conference" pic in my first report.
    (thanks for the nice gesture, though)
    there it is on my 2nd shelf from the top right.
    My other favorite books are my "roadside" pop culture coffee table books on the left (great signage and roadfood pics)

    here's a closer look at just my Catskill collection..


    #19
    Benzee
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    RE: Catskills weekend, part TWO .. .. 2007/09/14 22:34:40 (permalink)
    Hello Ellen,
    Looking forward to the Jersey Hot dog Tour tommorrow and really enjoyed your photos from your trip up to Sullivan . Next time you are up that way let me and cI lou know and we can do a quick meet and greet.

    Benzee
    #20
    mr chips
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    RE: Catskills weekend, part TWO .. .. 2007/09/15 10:25:06 (permalink)
    Great report as always. Love the photos.
    #21
    harriet1954
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    RE: Catskills weekend, part TWO .. .. 2007/09/16 15:30:16 (permalink)
    Hey to my new sister! Still recovering from yesterday, kinda. You know, I've never been up to that area (Catskills, I mean). I've been through or around them, but never in them. Seeing and reading stuff like this makes me wish I'd gone, and hanging with you yesterday makes me wish I'd gone even more. That hotel that was shuttered -- that actually doesn't look too bad, really. I'll have to read more about it. I've read so much about the Catskills, and in fact one of my favorite books is "Marjorie Morningstar". The Catskills, however, have always attracted more of the New York/North Jersey individual, rather than the Philadelphia/South Jersey individual. I think it's just the way it always was.
    #22
    Twinwillow
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    RE: Catskills weekend, part TWO .. .. 2007/09/16 17:14:35 (permalink)
    harriet1954> Re: Marjorie Morningstar. I read that book as a teenager. I was mesmerized by it. I loved that book!
    IMHO, the movie that was made from the book starring Gene Kelly and Natalie Wood didn't hold a candle to the book.
    #23
    harriet1954
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    RE: Catskills weekend, part TWO .. .. 2007/09/16 18:31:20 (permalink)
    quote:
    Originally posted by twinwillow

    harriet1954> Re: Marjorie Morningstar. I read that book as a teenager. I was mesmerized by it. I loved that book!
    IMHO, the movie that was made from the book starring Gene Kelly and Natalie Wood didn't hold a candle to the book.


    You took the words right out of my mouth with that one. I watched the movie just to say I'd watched it. The book has me in tears everytime I read it. They don't look like that in the book (you know what I mean). She certainly would NOT look like Natalie Wood, although it helps that they're both Jewish. They need to remake that one, but to do it carefully. I don't see where they get Gene Kelly as Noel Airman. Bad. Or Carolyn Jones as Marsha Zelenko, the plump one who ate the shrimp in the Chinese restaurant with the twinkle in her eye. I think the only one who might've fit a little bit was Ed Wynn as Uncle Samson, the one who died by the fountain. Even Zero Mostel would've been better, but that was 1958 when that came out. Just bad casting, especially when you feel you know the characters in the book so well. Noel Airman was more like a Brad Pitt, or even an Owen Wilson. I have that in hardback in a bookcase right next to my front door, with the books I love best.
    #24
    doggydaddy
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    RE: Catskills weekend, part TWO .. .. 2007/09/19 13:07:44 (permalink)


    Ellen,

    This has to be one of your most bittersweet trip reports ever. I know that you were really looking forward to this vacation, as you mentioned in another previous trip report how much you were looking forward to this one.
    I think the most depressing photo is of the rotting empty pool.

    I know that you will have better journeys and meals in the future.

    mark
    #25
    JAKE91
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    RE: Catskills weekend, part TWO .. .. 2007/09/20 16:15:57 (permalink)
    Ellen,I really dug all those wild power lines.[8D
    #26
    ellen4641
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    RE: Catskills weekend, part TWO .. .. 2007/09/22 16:53:03 (permalink)
    quote:
    Originally posted by doggydaddy



    Ellen,

    This has to be one of your most bittersweet trip reports ever. I know that you were really looking forward to this vacation, as you mentioned in another previous trip report how much you were looking forward to this one.
    I think the most depressing photo is of the rotting empty pool.

    I know that you will have better journeys and meals in the future.

    mark

    thanks Mark.......
    I still had a fun time , and did have a few good meals mixed in...
    my favorite being the prime rib I had at the rustic Rockland House by Roscoe... but , YES, it IS very bittersweet up there....
    one tries to find whatever is "still left" of that Borscht Belt but there is so very little...
    #27
    roossy90
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    RE: Catskills weekend, part TWO .. .. 2007/09/22 21:16:35 (permalink)
    Great report Ellen!
    But yet, it is amazing how so many small towns fall victim to disrepair and disarray.
    Must make lots of people feel sad when they come "home" for a visit.
    Reminds me of the saying, "You can never go home again".. It's true in many cases.
    But I find it odd that the Hassidic Jews have migrated to there.
    #28
    JAKE91
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    RE: Catskills weekend, part TWO .. .. 2007/09/24 14:02:45 (permalink)
    Ellen, if you have never been to Baltimore's Inner Harbor area, it is well worth a roadtrip.

    Museums, restaurants, taverns and the Orioles Stadium is located in the area. Rock bands play in an area called Rams Head Live all summer long from thur-sat.

    I go at least 3 times per yr. The city of Baltimore is to be commended for what they have accomplished with the district.
    #29
    wheregreggeats.com
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    RE: Catskills weekend, part TWO .. .. 2007/09/24 14:11:14 (permalink)
    Ellen.
    Thank you ... I know the time it takes to do these and I appreciate the pictures and the honest narratives.
    #30
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