Features

Best Service Awards: Convenience Store

Category: Convenience Stores
1. Dollar General, Margaretville

By Brian Sweeney
The Dollar General store in Margaretville has rapidly gain­ed popularity as a shopping spot for a wide variety of items.
“Our company format is list­ed as general merchandise convenience store, but we are shop­ped for everything,” explained Manager Linda Ballard.
She indicated that the variety of goods offered and low prices have proved to be a winning combination.
READY TO ASSIST — Employees, from left, Brittany McAdams, Dawn Hamil and Candace Rosa  are among the staff who keep things running smoothly at the Margaretville Dollar General.  — Photo by Dick SanfordREADY TO ASSIST — Employees, from left, Brittany McAdams, Dawn Hamil and Candace Rosa are among the staff who keep things running smoothly at the Margaretville Dollar General. — Photo by Dick Sanford


Best Service Awards: Veterinarian

Category: Veterinarians/Animal Care
1. Brookside Veterinary Hospital, Arkville

By Joan Lawrence-Bauer
Cats, dogs, birds, and a host of exotic pets and farm animals live healthier lives since the arrival of Dr. Laraine Caliri and her team to Arkville. Since opening the full-service hospital and kennel in 2012, Dr. Caliri has built a practice serving nearly 1,500 owners of more than 2,000 different animals. A tour of the hospital makes it obvious why the Brookside Veterinary hospital team took first place in the News’ Best in Service awards this year.
GOOD CARE — Dr. Laraine Caliri, left, and one of her assistants take care of a feline patient at Brookside Veterinary Hospital on Route 28, Arkville. — Photo by Joan Lawrence-BauerGOOD CARE — Dr. Laraine Caliri, left, and one of her assistants take care of a feline patient at Brookside Veterinary Hospital on Route 28, Arkville. — Photo by Joan Lawrence-Bauer


Best Service Awards: Bed and Breakfasts

Here in our feature section, you'll find profile stories of several businesses that won prizes in the 2014 Best Service Awards contest. Each year, the News profiles a selection of winners to provide a more detailed view of what makes these companies stand out for their customers.

Category: Bed & Breakfasts/Inns
1. River Run
2. Margaretville Mountain Inn
3. Meadowood – tie
3. Spillian – tie
3. Breezy Hill – tie

By Joan Lawrence-Bauer
The history and culture of the Catskill Mountains are alive and well in the bed and breakfast inns that serve countless visitors, and increasingly, residents, of a region known as America’s First Wilderness. From the modest Meadowood Inn in Arkville to the majestic Spillian in Fleischmanns, innkeepers provide way more than just a pillow for the weary traveler. And from the antique filled River Run Bed & Breakfast to the awesome vistas of the Breezy Hill Inn, delivering a top quality guest experience keeps people coming back year in and year out.


Lew and Karen Kolar: A community love story

By Joan Lawrence-Bauer
She laughs at his jokes. He finishes her sentences. Lew and Karen Kolar have been life partners since their wedding in 1989. But since August, the local power couple has been professional partners as well. As the manage­ment team running Margaret­ville’s Catalog Outlet store, the Kolars bring a combination of experience (his) and enthusiasm (hers) to Main Street at a critical juncture in the community’s history.
Lew and Karen at WorkLew and Karen at Work


New ceramics business in Delhi is lighting up the lamp world

By Cheryl Petersen
Stone and Sawyer, a relatively new business located in Delhi, has expanded its market for stoneware ceramic lamps. “We’re finalizing a transaction with The Smyth, a small luxury hotel near the World Trade Center in New York City,” said Julian Peploe, co-owner with David Ryan. “We will be making the final delivery of lamps this week.”
Julian Peploe at the kilns of the Stone and Sawyer workshop. — Photos by Cheryl PetersonJulian Peploe at the kilns of the Stone and Sawyer workshop. — Photos by Cheryl Peterson


Pine Hill center meets the needs of a diverse community

­­By Joan Lawrence-Bauer
Born of tragedy, to provide a place for teens to gather and grow in healthy ways, the Pine Hill Community Center (the Center) has become a regional anchor space offering a broad base of activities and opportunities for western Ulster and eastern Delaware counties. Its Executive Director, Ann Epner, who arrived two weeks before Hurricane Irene, has steered the group through disaster and recession by adapting it to an ever-changing community. Epner will retire this year leaving a vibrant and diverse organization ready to grow in new directions. The News spoke with Epner and with board member Florence Hamling last week, about the center’s history, its programs and its future.
Alex McKeon, above at left, Oliver McGillicuddy and Achaia Gindele, at right, concentrate on sand art projects with the help of Francesca Warnes. Kids from 6-12 meet weekly at 2:30 for games, crafts and other activities.  — Photo by­ Joan Lawrence-BauerAlex McKeon, above at left, Oliver McGillicuddy and Achaia Gindele, at right, concentrate on sand art projects with the help of Francesca Warnes. Kids from 6-12 meet weekly at 2:30 for games, crafts and other activities. — Photo by­ Joan Lawrence-Bauer


Weddings bring a new twist to Rudd's stylist business

By Joan Lawrence-Bauer
Nearly one out of every four weddings in the United States today is a destination wedding and Candace Rudd, a professional hair stylist in Roxbury, is among the hundreds of service providers in the region who benefit from this trend.


RCS students get firsthand look at wildlife

By Joan Lawrence-Bauer
Squeals and giggles filled the Roxbury Central School gymnasium last Wednesday when several elementary classes were treated to a real-world lesson on animal adaptations for survival.
Screams of delight were quick­ly hushed to whisper level as noted wildlife lecturer Bill Robinson pulled a red-tail hawk from its crate, and explained how it catches and kills prey.
UP CLOSE — Roxbury students in these photos look on in amazement during a program last week designed to educate the students about wildlife. — Photos by Joan Lawrence-BauerUP CLOSE — Roxbury students in these photos look on in amazement during a program last week designed to educate the students about wildlife. — Photos by Joan Lawrence-Bauer


Amy's Take-Away and Catering has taken off

By Joan Lawrence-Bauer
Amy Jackson has lots of skills. A professional actress, cook, gardener, and promoter of good causes, Jackson focuses on her cooking these days, making soups and special menus for Amy’s Take-Away and Catering in Lanesville. The entrepreneur, who lives and works at the former H.D. Lane General Store, is as much storyteller as chef and her enthusiasm for what she does is infectious.
Jackson found her way to the Catskills in 1997 after years in Texas where she worked with Urban Harvest.


Computer whiz has answers for what ails your devices

By Joan Lawrence-Bauer
Who ya gonna call? If the problem is with your computer, the answer is not Ghostbusters! The answer, for people between Delhi and Woodstock, is probably Igal Gofman. And whether the computer is a PC or a Mac, Gofman can help with anything from a fried motherboard to a sticky keyboard. The entrepreneur who once worked for Interpol, tracking drug traffickers from Mexico to the US, has seen it all. Nothing in the computer world intimidates him.


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