The needler in the haystack.

Saturday, November 22, 2014

No post today...

No Plainfield Today post today; I have an early morning meeting.

See you tomorrow. -- Dan.

Friday, November 21, 2014

Plainfield Symphony features Strauss Saturday

Salome's dance, as interpreted by Art Nouveau artist Aubrey Beardsley.
The Plainfield Symphony continues its 95th season with a program featuring Richard Strauss tone poems this Saturday evening.

Of particular interest will be Salome's Dance of the Seven Veils, drawn from Strauss' opera Salome, whose eroticism scandalized audiences when it premiered in 1905. That opera was based on a French translation of Oscar Wilde's play of the same name.

Strauss' opera in one act not only featured the erotic dance section, but concluded with Salome kissing the severed head of John the Baptist and declaring her love for him.

The program also includes Beethoven's Piano Concerto 3, performed by this year's YPCNJ winner Allen Yueh.

All is under the baton of PSO conductor Charles Prince.

The Plainfield Symphony Orchestra performs at Crescent Avenue Presbyterian Church, East 7th Street and Watchung Avenue. (Parking in the church lot, on the street, or in Swain Galleries lot.)

Tickets: $50/Reserved, $30/General admission, $20/Seniors/Students; under 12 free. Info: (908) 561-5140 or visit the PSO website:

  -- Dan Damon [follow]

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Thursday, November 20, 2014

Drake House hosts meeting on Raritan Valley tourism Saturday

City crews recently trimmed the trees in from of the Drake House.
Plainfield's Drake House will host the November meeting of the Raritan-Millstone Heritage Alliance this Saturday. The Alliance has as its goal increased awareness and tourism in the watershed communities of the Raritan and Millstone Rivers.

Author Jason Slesinski will give a special presentation at 9:30 AM on his new book Along the Raritan River: South Amboy to New Brunswick, which is part of Arcadia Publishing's photographic series.

The Alliance meeting gets under way at 10:00 AM. The Historical Society of Plainfield recently joined the Alliance and this is the first time it is hosting a meeting.

The public is invited. The Drake House Museum at 602 West Front Street (at the foot of Plainfield Avenue) is open to the public Sunday afternoons from 2:00 - 4:00 PM, and at other times by appointment. For more information, call (908) 755-5831 or visit the website at

  -- Dan Damon [follow]

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Wednesday, November 19, 2014

Why I don't miss Buffalo

That is a wall of snow approaching downtown Buffalo.
The view is from high up in City Hall, looking northwest.
(Image by WBEN, Buffalo's NBC affiliate. Click to enlarge.)
No matter how bad, Plainfield
winters cannot top Buffalo in my book.

Having grown up in Chautauqua County, the westernmost county in New York state, I have seen plenty of snow. Enough for a lifetime, actually.

So, when I saw the NBC picture above, evidently taken from high up in the tower of Buffalo's City Hall, I recalled why I don't miss those Lake Erie winters.

That is literally a wall of snow on the left -- you can see just a small bit of Lake Erie in the right middle of the picture.

The current storm has so far dropped four to six feet of snow and Gov. Cuomo has declared a state of emergency in three counties: Chautauqua, Erie (Buffalo) and Cattaragus. 136 miles of the NY Thruway is closed and nothing is moving.

Dunkirk and Fredonia, the two towns closest to where I grew up, have both issued travel bans.

The picture below is taken from the Dunkirk Observer newspaper's building (on the right) looking north on Central Avenue. The avenue ends in State Route 5, known locally as Lake Shore Drive, which runs left to right just beyond the farthest building shown. The end of Central Avenue is a pier into Dunkirk Harbor, which cannot even be seen here.

The view towards Lake Erie from the Dunkirk Observer building.
(Image: Dunkirk Observer.)
Even the worst Plainfield winter can't begin to come close.

Dunkirk and Fredonia, near where I grew up, are at the top center.
Buffalo would be above the upper right corner of this map.

  -- Dan Damon [follow]

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