December 2018
Town of New Lebanon Comprehensive Plan
Cut Your Christmas Tree at Windswept Farms
Darrow School Winter Concert Dec. 7
Mountain Road School Holiday Fair Dec. 8
Wyomanock Center Holiday Wreath Making Dec. 2
Church of Our Saviour Healing Service Dec. 1
Update on the Abner Perry House
LVPA Lighting of the Christmas Tree Dec. 1
New Lebanon School Holiday Celebrations Dec. 1 and Dec. 18
December Events at the NL Library-- Holiday Party Dec. 7
Cynthia Creech in AARP Magazine
Winter Indoors Farmers Market Dec. 16
Conservation Panel Discussion and Information Session Jan. 12
The Abode Celebrations Dec. 16 and Dec. 28-31
Birding in Hudson Valley Booksigning Dec. 8
New Lebanon Road Sign

Did you know that New Lebanon has a Comprehensive Plan?

On the Town of New Lebanon website, you'll find a link to the Comprehensive Plan.  This vision document was written and adopted fifteen years ago, and it provides a wealth of information about the town, its resources and its goals.  If you're not familiar with it, click here to take a quick look.  

Towns write Comprehensive Plans to show how they want to go forward with choices and options for development.  Often a Plan is needed in order for a town to get grants, and it must always incorporate a good deal of community input.  NL's Comprehensive Plan tells a very full story of what the townspeople of New Lebanon said was important to them during the making of that document.  The Plan shows, for example, that  residents in 2004 were very proud of the town's scenery and viewscape, and that conserving it was key for mostly everyone.
Is conservation of the town's scenery and viewscape still as important to you in 2019?  Please let us know by taking this one-question survey:

A section in the back of the Comprehensive Plan, called "A Brief Economic History of New Lebanon", outlined the creation of the current plan.  
" As New Lebanon passed into the 21 st  century," it says, "a group of townspeople organized to update the Comprehensive Plan.  They wrestled their way to a pragmatic conclusion about the Valley's economic future, recognizing that small retail, home-based, and light industrial businesses would be the most appropriate, in the context of encouraging a small-town, "smart-growth" model." 

There is some considerable thinking in New Lebanon's Plan about what the town can become and how.  Reading it will give you a lot of insight and encouragement about what the town has in store.

Tie the Christmas Tree to the Car or Truck

But first you could go to Windswept Farms,  right here in New Lebanon, to cut it down.  You can choose from a beautiful variety of already-cut trees, or you can hop on the trailer towed by the tractor and bounce around on the seats.  In three minutes you're well up the hill, looking over the valley and surrounded by trees of all sizes.  They are Frasier firs, Balsam firs and Canaan firs.  

They call the Frasier fir the Cadillac of Christmas trees, with its great shape and soft needles that don't shed.  The Balsam fir is the most fragrant.  The Canaan combines the shape of the Frasier with the aroma of the Balsam.  But generally once you've clambered down from the tractor, you pick a tree for more personal reasons.  Somehow a tree in the open field appears to you to be The One, and fortunately you or someone in your party has been equipped with a handsaw to claim it.

Wear boots and something rugged, not necessarily just for the work of getting the saw into position at the base of the tree but also to dance around the field yelling encouragement at whomever is doing that.  The tractor will soon appear to pick you back up, with helpers who will wrestle your tree onto the flatbed behind you.  Back down in the valley they will also drill the tree, take off some of the bottom branches, and net it if you like.  

You can cut your own Christmas trees on December weekends at Windswept Farms, 10 am to 5 pm.  Windswept Farms is at 36 Old Route 20 in New Lebanon, in the triangle between routes 20 and 22 at the eastern end of town.  It is open on weekdays too for the purchase of pre-cut trees, wreaths, produce, and antiques.
The Darrow School, 110 Darrow Road, New Lebanon, will hold its annual Winter Concert in the Tannery on Friday, December 7, at 7:30 p.m. 
Please join them for a magical evening of classics, pop favorites, and holiday tunes by the Darrow Chorus and the Darrow Jazz Ensemble. The concert is free and open to the public.  
Call Sarah Frederick at (518) 794-6555 or email for more information.


Saturday, December 8, 2018 
11:00 AM-4:00 PM
4565 County Route 9, New Lebanon/East Nassau, NY  12062
Free and Open to the Public


Wyomanock Center
68 Wyomanock Rd
Stephentown, NY 12168 
Sunday December 2nd
Come create your own holiday wreath or centerpiece from locally gathered natural materials.  This is a great family activity that can be done at low cost. Guidance and all materials provided.  
Rain or Shine. The event will  be held in the yurt!
Please register at 
The Church of Our Saviour is holding  a Healing Service on December 1 at 6 pm to which everyone is invited.   The church offers the service as a prayer-filled way to start the season of Advent, and members of the Church Healing Team will be available to assist. 
The  Church is located at 1460 Route 22 in New Lebanon.  Its beautiful building was placed on the National Register of Historic Places in 1997.    
Howard Gillet wrote a history of the church in 1952, in which he wrote:  "The building, of English Gothic design in native stone, stands on land given in 1871 by the North Family Shakers for 'A church edifice and appurtenances of the Protestant Episcopal Church only, forever, in consideration of the sum of $1."
You may have noticed that the Abner Perry House, the long-suffering little blue house next door to Fisher's Store, at Route 20 next to West Street, has a shiny new head scarf.  
The members of the Phoenix Project are grateful to Pete and Mike Hursa for this, but it cannot conceal the fact that the roof ridge has a major dip in it.
Last fall, the Phoenix Project   applied for a NY Main Street Grant which would enable the hiring of  an engineer to design all the improvements needed to make this battered building structurally sound.  They  hope to hear within a month or so if they  will receive the grant.  In the meantime, the building faces the risk of being condemned, which would mean that another prominently located historic structure in New Lebanon could be lost.
This has motivated  the Phoenix Project  to think about going ahead and replacing the roof of the two-story part of the building.  An experienced local contractor has agreed to give them a quote for the work.   
Once they have that in hand,  they will put together a GoFundMe campaign (another one!  stay posted!) to raise money for it.  Aren't we fortunate to live in a town that provides us with so many worthy opportunities to support the community and at the same time earn tax breaks?  Thankfully Phoenix Project is a non-profit and donations to it are tax deductible.  Please help us restore this once-stylish residence.  Stay tuned for news about the next steps for the Abner Perry House! 

 For more information,  contact Deb at  

For a small town, New Lebanon certainly has a lot of merriment going on in December.  You are welcome and wanted at any number of celebrations and holiday events;  we've tried to include all that we knew of here!  We at Grow the Valley wish you a wonderful holiday season and the best possible New Year. 


The Lebanon Valley Protective Association's
 Welcome to the Holidays 
Scheduled for Sat 12/1/18 from 3-5pm at the New Lebanon Firehouse.  The event is open to everyone young and young at heart.   
Join the LVPA for holiday music by the NLCS Elementary school choir, holiday refreshments, a visit from Santa with gifts for children 0- 12 yrs. and the official lighting of the Christmas Tree in front of the station.

School holiday celebrations

The Walter B. Howard PTA Holiday Craft Fair is on Saturday, December 1, from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m.  It will be held at the Jr/Sr High School, located at 14665 State Route 22.  There will be crafters, silent auction, raffles and more!
Then enjoy the Christmas Concert given by the always great Jr/Sr High School Chorus on December 18 at 6 pm.   Snow date is on December 19.

DECEMBER  Events  
at the New Lebanon Library
Sunday-Dec. 2
Book Group-Word by Word: The Secret Life of Dictionaries by Kory Stamper-11AM
Sunday -Dec 31
In Concert-David Grover & Linda Worster 2PM-4PM
Monday-Dec. 3, 10, 17
Gentle Hatha Yoga-10:30AM-12PM
Kripalu Yoga-5:45PM-7PM
Monday-Dec. 24
Library closes at Noon for Christmas holiday
Monday-Dec 31
Library closes at Noon for New Years Eve
Tuesday-December 4, 11, 18
Tightknit Community Knitting Group-5PM-7PM
Tuesday-December 11
Midday Matinee-1PM
Tuesday-Dec. 25
Library closed for Christmas day holiday
Tuesday-January 1
Library closed for New Years Day holiday
Wednesday-Dec. 5, 12, 19
Small Wonders Storytime group-10AM-10:45
Preschool Story Hour-10:45-11:30AM
Wednesday-Dec 26
No Small Wonder Story Time
No Preschool Story Hour
No Open Mic
Thursday-Dec 13
Paws to Read 4:30PM-5:30PM
Thursday-Dec 27
Senior Information & Referral Services 10AM-12PM
Friday-December 7th
Community Party/Potluck-Everyone is invited!-6PM
Friday-Dec 14th
Sensory Play-10:30AM-11:30AM
Coffeehouse Night with Linda Worster -6:30PM
Friday-Dec 21st
Friday-- Dec 28th
TAG Team Check In-6PM-6:30PM
Family Flix: Smallfoot-6:30PM-8:30PM
Saturday-Dec 15
Game On-11AM-1PM

Here is New Lebanon resident Cynthia Creech with one of her Randall cows.  Cynthia and her herd were featured in a gorgeous 2-page feature article in the November issue of AARP magazine.

Would you like to see this article in a larger version so you can read it ?  Click
The article was written by Beth Levine, with photograph by Richard Schultz.


The outdoor farmers market is finished for the season, but you can still find the market indoors on the third Sunday of each month, November through May!
The market is a fantastic source for your holiday pies, food, and gifts. 
 * 12/16 * 1/20 * 2/17 * 3/17 *  
*4/21 * 5/19  
at the FIREHOUSE on Route 20/22

All your favorite small farms, producers, makers, and much more!

Grow the Valley will be offering a panel discussion and information session about local conservation on Saturday, January 12, 2019 from 10 am to 12 noon at the New Lebanon Town Hall.

Three experts will discuss three commonly asked questions about conservation and its impact on the community, followed by questions and answers.  All are welcome.

Rumi's Urs Celebration
December 16, 2:00 PM 
Quddus Meditation Hall 

Please come help us celebrate Rumi's Urs on Sunday, December 16th at 2:00 pm in the Abode Meditation Hall.  
Jalal ad-Din Rumi was a 13th Century Persian poet, an Islamic dervish, and a Sufi Mystic. He is the most read and known poet in the world.  
We will enjoy a celebration of Music, poetry, Zikr, readings, and sharing of this wonderful Mystic Jalal ad-Din Rumi. All are welcome to come share in this wonderful gathering!
For more information, see
New Years Eve Retreat  
with Aziza Scott and Yaqin Aubert
 December 28-31 
Begin the New Year with a sacred journey under Aziza Scott's gentle guidance.   
Aziza establishes an atmosphere of sacredness and emotional safety that is healing and energizing. Her humor and common sense provide a grounded approach to spirituality that helps in personal problem solving, inner realization and spiritual growth.  
Yaqin Aubert will lead the early morning and evening sessions, and will welcome retreatants on Thursday evening.
Registration available at: 

Kathryn Schneider with Book on Birding in Hudson Valley
Chatham Bookstore, December 8.
Kathryn J. Schneider brings her book "Birding the Hudson Valley" to the Chatham Bookstore on Saturday, December 8.  
Published by University Press of New England in October, the book is a guide to birds and birdwatching in the Hudson Valley.  
Book signing will take place at 4 p.m. as part of the Chatham Winterfest. Conversation with Thomas Chulak from the bookstore and Q & A follow a brief reading at 5 p.m. Free. Refreshments. Portion of proceeds donated to Columbia Land Conservancy. Live at the Chatham Bookstore, 27 Main St., Chatham, NY. 518-392-3005. 

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