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HARLEM VALLEY— Volunteers from throughout the region — including numerous first responders who are lighting up their vehicles for weekend parades — are working hard throughout the area to provide holiday cheer in the coming weeks. Each town has unique events, so pick a few favorites, hitch the family reindeer to the sleigh and head out to make some priceless memories.

Amenia

• Tree Lighting — Town Hall, Sunday, Dec. 2, from 3 to 5 p.m. Santa will distribute books and pose with children for pictures they may take home. ...

Regional News

Board Leadership Forum draws nonprofits for a day of learning

SHEFFIELD, Mass. — Leaders from nearly 100 nonprofit organizations in the tristate area gathered Saturday, Oct. 13, for the first Board Leadership Forum at Bard College at Simon’s Rock in Great Barrington, Mass. The daylong training and networking opportunity drew over 180 volunteer board leaders and over 50 executive directors from nonprofits with a range of missions, from education to arts to health and human services, that aim to strengthen communities in northwest Litchfield, northeast Dutchess, Columbia and Berkshire counties.

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The oak and the maple and our dashed hopes

I should have known better. Daring to predict the quality of the autumn foliage in New England is an act of hubris that seldom goes unanswered. Alert readers of this column will have noticed that despite my assertion in September that we had the potential for an outstanding display of fall color, we have instead experienced one of the drabbest, most muted and altogether lackluster leaf peeping seasons in recent memory. 

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Community pulls together after fire rips through Millerhurst Farm

editor@millertonnews.com

ANCRAMDALE — As of Tuesday morning, Oct. 16, a GoFundMe page that set out to raise $20,000 had raised $73,307 for the Miller family, which lost 47 of its 48 cows in a fiery blaze that ripped through its dairy farm on Sunday, Oct. 14, at around 7:30 p.m.

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Making it easy for everyone to vote Nov. 6

The Salisbury registrars, Karin Gerstel and Maureen Dell, plus Anna McGuire from North Canaan, took a few minutes during a busy time of year on Wednesday, Oct. 10, to go over the options for registering to vote and for voting in the upcoming election on Tuesday, Nov. 6.
The first thing to know is that all voting information is available on the Secretary of the State website (www.portal.ct.gov/SOTS).

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Eight fatal crashes since May: Deadly highways

Three more fatal automobile accidents have happened in the Northwest Corner in the past two weeks, bringing the total of fatalities this year to eight. 
German Perez, 60, of Ashley Falls, Mass., died last week when his car slid off Route 7 in North Canaan into the Housatonic River. His family alerted the police that he was missing on Tuesday, Sept. 25; Perez’s Toyota Tacoma truck was found in the river the following day. The State Police reported that his body had been found on Wednesday, Oct. 3 (see story, below).

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Town Board discusses solar prices, reviews Green Briar meeting

judithb@millertonnews.com

WASHINGTON — The Town Board met on Thursday, Sept. 13, at Town Hall. 
Town Supervisor Gary Ciferri stated that donations had been made to the town from Millbrook Tribute Gardens in the amount of $5,000 each to the town’s senior citizens’ program, a camp scholarship and a camp trip. Also, $15,000 was donated for reservoir filtration.

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Columbia County Habitat for Humanity to build in Ancram

kaitlinl@millertonnews.com

ANCRAMDALE — With two new houses currently under construction in the Pine Plains school district, Columbia County Habitat for Humanity is now keeping watch for first-time homebuyers interested in owning a house with an affordable mortgage in the hamlet of Ancramdale.
Partnering with families, community volunteers and local businesses and organizations, Habitat for Humanity prides itself on transforming lives, since 1993. Already, a total of 19 houses have been built in the county this year.

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Nature walk uncovers mushroom species at Harlem Valley Homestead in Wingdale

kaitlinl@millertonnews.com

WINGDALE — The Oblong Land Conservancy and Harlem Valley Appalachian Trail Community hosted a nature walk and talk with farm naturalist and mycologist Alanna Burns on Saturday, Sept. 22.
Beginning at 10 a.m., a crowd of nature enthusiasts and interested community members gathered at the Harlem Valley Homestead, located at 147 Old Forge Road in Wingdale. All attendees were dressed for a morning hike, some carrying knapsacks, baskets, guide books and miniature field notebooks to record their findings.

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The renaissance of the Copake Grange

COPAKE— In a time when too many community organizations are withering on the vine for lack of involvement, new life has been breathed into the Copake Grange 935 in the form of a tripling of membership and regular use of the century old building. 
Until last year, membership had fallen to a low of about 20, but even with that, official meetings couldn’t be held because the Grange could rarely reach the necessary quorum of seven members. Therefore, no business could be conducted. 

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Dover Day honors veterans

kaitlinl@millertonnews.com

DOVER PLAINS — The town of Dover was in high spirits last Saturday, Sept. 22, as local families gathered for this year’s celebration of Dover Day at Boyce Park, located at 6423 Route 55 in Wingdale, N.Y.
The celebration’s festivities kicked off at 12:30 p.m. with a parade in front of the park, though the excitement started long before noon with cars filling up the parking lot. Traffic was directed to make way for for incoming spectators while families stood along the road in anticipation of the vehicles headed their way.

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