Sitting down on November 25 to write this one day to go with my “deadline to the printer,” and my mind drifts back to less stressful days–you know, the ones pre-Hurricane-Sandy? It might be easier to think of this past fall as one characterized only by the storm’s profound disruption and destruction to so many communities. I prefer to recall, or at least not forget, an especially vibrant and full of promise fall in New Castle–the likes of which I haven’t witnessed since first moving to Chappaqua in 1996.
It began with an unprecedented attendance on Community Day in September. Under balmy skies, visitors enjoyed everything from the Rotary’s always delish hot dogs to impromptu dance performances, while merchants, town officials, and non profit organizations alike had their precious annual chance to acquaint residents and visitors to their wide array of goods, goals and services. So, ok, the politicians were out politicking too. Democracy at work! And another major election day, here and gone.
In October, the community stepped out en masse yet again to enjoy a rollickin’ downtown, first time ever Chappaqua-Millwood Chamber-sponsored Fall Festival complete with an apple pie contest (won by Chappaqua’s Teresa Shen) and hay rides. The turnout, on yet another beautiful fall day was good fun and also good business. It was as if a years’ long mantra from our merchants, from the town–and from local media too– to “shop local” was finally registering widely.
And now, post storm, as we slowly recoup and consider Sandy’s lessons, the community’s unabashed enthusiasm for all things local seems to already be recapturing the fall’s earlier promise …as evidenced by a brisk “Small Business Saturday” turnout on Nov. 24 in towns here and across the country. And so.. as colder temperatures and frosty mornings kick in, the odds for a “winning winter,” this issue’s overall theme, is already lookin’ darn good…a tree lighting, a holiday stroll and the Chappaqua Orchestra’s annual concert and sing along at the Bell School kick off a holiday season and, soon, a New Year that always carries renewed hope for peace and harmony.
Enjoy the wide array of stories and profiles in this issue. It wasn’t an easy one to “sell” while everyone was smarting from Sandy. Behind the scenes here, my metal gets tested sometimes! I’m glad to report that I’m still up for the challenge! All my best,