Monday, April 30, 2007

Cambridge Cooking #3 Cambridge Cooking #3

(Photos: Debra Pearlman)

Looking for an easy to fix, no hassle dinner? Here's one for the crock pot:

Chicken Thighs in Apricot Sauce

6 cups (about 1.75 lbs) sweet potatoes peeled and cubed into 1-inch pieces
1 cup apricot preserve, divided (about 1 jar)
6 skinless chicken thighs with bone
1 cup sweet onion, sauteed
1 Tablespoon butter
1 teaspoon thyme
1/2 teaspoons salt
2 bay leaves

Saute onions in 1 tablespoon butter until translucent

Place sweet potatoes, 1/2 cup of preserves and 1/4 tsp. salt in a 4-5 qt. slow cooker
Toss well to coat potatoes.
Sprinkle with 1/2 tsp thyme and 1/2 of the onions
Add chicken
coast with remaining 1/2 cup preserve, add bay leaves, salt, pepper, thyme

Cover and cook on high for 1 hour, reduce to low and cook for 7 hours.

If you don't want the carbs of the potatoes, you can substitute carrots. I've also used turnips with great success. You can use skinless/boneless thighs, but bone-in is more flavorful.

Other meats this works well with: chicken breast, turkey tenderloin

Peel and cube the potatoes and slice the onion the night before storing them in a plastic bag or sealed container. This makes the morning assembly go quickly.

Dice the potatoes rather small, they cook better

Do Not Add any liquid, there will be plenty of gravy when it's done


Thursday, April 26, 2007

Help Paint the Beacon Feed Building Help Paint the Beacon Feed Building

Greetings All! Volunteers needed to paint the Beacon Feed gold! Please help Hubbard Hall Projects meet its challenge to finish painting the exterior of the Beacon Feed this upcoming weekend: Saturday, April 28th and Sunday April 29th!!

As of today, the whole 3,800+ sq ft structure has been primed either through volunteers' delicate brush strokes or using a spray machine. Despite the continued use of the paint sprayer for the final exterior coats, volunteers are needed to paint 'to cut in', 'reach corners and crevices' and 'paint the trim' (a brownish color). HHP estimates that 10 volunteers are needed during each session to complete the task or nearly 200 volunteer hours. We can do this!!!! Join the fun! Refreshments and goodies will be served!!

Volunteer opportunities will be from 8 AM - 12 noon and 12 noon to 4 PM (note a four hour shift) on both Saturday and Sunday. Please mark your calendar and let us know if you will be available.

Help HHP meet its goal of completing most of the work on the structure by May 1st!


Contact: Margaret Waterson 677-3693 or Sarah Ashton 677-3555

Tuesday, April 24, 2007

Treasures of Cambridge # 38 Treasures of Cambridge # 38

Christine Hoffer pictured in front of the vault in the former Bean Head’s Coffee House, has lived in the Village of Cambridge for the past nine years.

Christine moved to the area from Spokane, Washington when her husband took a job in Hoosick Falls at Oak Mitsui Inc. After a headhunter hooked him up with this new firm, Christine came out and found the region unlike what they was used to out west. “Just looking at the area, it was different, it was interesting, but the job for Geoff was the most interesting and we lucked out with our community. Finding Cambridge was truly by accident.”

When they first moved here they house hunted everyday for 45 days; they went everywhere, from Bennington to Shaftsbury and almost all the way to Brunswick. They chose Cambridge because Geoff’s boss lived here and the trainmaster’s house was up for sale, but it had been divided into a two family house. With a touch of her husband’s engineering skill and a few “hammers to the wall, we really did luck out finding Cambridge,” she says.

When asked what impressed her most about moving to Cambridge after she had lived here for a short while, she responded, “Truly, the people. When you move to a rural community there is always the fear of not being accepted. I grew up in Anchorage, Alaska and if you are not from there you are not an Alaskan, period, end of story.” She moved from a larger community where she worked in the corporate realm managing a team running a hotel. And this all was just ten months before she had just had her first child, Matthew. “At the time I was transitioning personally from “Miss Corporate America,” to being a Mom, and a first time Mom, so there was a fear factor with that. But truthfully the Greenwich and Cambridge libraries introduced me to some really stellar people who are now best friends.”

Christine believes most of the events that transpired since her moving here are intrinsically connected to her destiny; from buying the trainmaster’s house adjacent to the Cambridge Hotel in 1998, to falling into working with the fledgling Hotel management team doing bookings, marketing and promotion for the first year. “That is sort of what threw me back into the workforce and the community at large and to a great extent how, I believe, we became accepted by the community.” She helped with a very courageous grassroots effort to make the Hotel all it could be at the time.

That effort grew into many others, with her work on the beginnings of the Balloon Festival, which is now an annual event, her work on the board of our local arts organization, Hubbard Hall, and ultimately the purchase of the Cambridge Inn Bed and Breakfast from the Darlings. Christine and Geoff now run The Rice Mansion Inn as a full time bed and breakfast. It has become an iconic destination for people to enjoy the wonders of our areas history and pastoral beauty, as well as a fine facility for staging corporate retreats or realizing special occasions such as family reunions and weddings (I know I spent my wedding night there!)

Christine’s prop is a portrait of Jerome Rice, the builder of the Rice seed company, which became a major economic force in this community and to a large part gave our town the unique and architecturally interesting look and feel we enjoy today. Christine has become quite versed in the history of our town and specifically Mr. Rice’s part in that history. She likes to believe that the Rice seed company (now Varak Industrial Park), built on what was once a swampy area, helped to unify two town centers- that of White Creek and Cambridge (formally Cambridge Corners)- the East and West sides of town.

Christine talks about Mr. Rice with much adulation, “He was a remarkable man. He did everything he did from a wheelchair because he had rheumatoid arthritis and was a prisoner of war (during the Civil War) and the two things combined crippled him for most of this adult life. Today I hear people say, “I cannot do this or I cannot do that, and here is a man, one hundred years ago, that built the countries second largest seed company from his wheelchair.” Christine feels honored by the special opportunity she and her husband have to rebuild his home, educate people about him and continue his legacy by helping to maintain Cambridge as the special place that it has become.

When asked about her legacy she replied, “I would like to be remembered as someone who always tried to do the right thing, and… embodied Mr. Rice.”

Monday, April 23, 2007


CVCS School Board Meeting

Tuesday, April 24, 2007 at 7:00 pm. This is a very important meeting where many of the concerns of our teachers and residents will be open for discussion.

If you have not attended a School Board Meeting, go to the front entrance of the school. The meeting will be held in the School Cafeteria.

It's our school, our school board, and our children's futures!

Sunday, April 22, 2007

Windows on our Worlds Windows on our Worlds

Give a glimpse of the world from out your window for CambridgeBuzz readers! Get your digital camera,look out your window, snap a picture and send a jpeg of your view to with date, time and general location that you took the picture and I will post it ASAP. Thanks so much.

4-14-07 Baltimore, MD.

Tuesday, April 17, 2007

Cambridge Life: 4/17/07 Cambridge Life: 4/17/07

The beauty of Cambridge, NY shines through April's showers

Life in Cambridge, NY is busy. This past weekend the Battenkill-Roubaix bike race came roaring through town. Over 1000 riders braved the wintry blast and coming Nor'easter to compete in this challenging 55 mile (75 miles for the Pro men) Pro/Am bike race. I split the day between standing at the intersection of Union and Main Streets with Dede Nash and the Pender boys directing traffic and shooting video on the hilly section of the course. The riders were impressive as they climbed the 4400 foot vertical course, but the elite women stole the day. They made climbing the hills look like riding on the flats and spectators from as far away as Boston stood in awe of the "Cat. 1/2 group of women riders.

Meeting House Road
Photo by Dave Kraus

Race day was followed by the predicted Nor'easter. We've been having quite the spring around here, snow, sleet, rain, sun, cold, name it and Cambridge, NY has experienced it this past week. The weatherman says that this weekend will be a beauty with temps in the 50's - 60's. I'll be out in the yard picking up the tree limbs, twigs and debris and getting them out to the curb for town pick-up April 14-22.

If you would like to help celebrate Earth Day on April 22, email or contact Christine Hoffer at the Rice Mansion Inn at 677-5741. The Towns and Villages of the Battenkill Valley are sponsoring an Earth Day clean-up. Volunteers will be treated to a hot dog roast at Varak Park on Sunday, April 22.

I'm looking forward to the lilacs blooming, the tulips opening up and the coming of spring. Nothing beats Cambridge in the spring, except Cambridge in the summer, fall and winter.

Friday, April 13, 2007

Photographer's Log Photographer's Log

Evening Ride on Stage Road

On April 5th we awoke to a winter wonderland all around us. I had planned to go out shooting early that morning but was held up until late afternoon while I’d spent the day watching the snow melting and falling off of the trees. Saddened that I had probably missed all the loveliness I went out to discover my fears were well founded. The trees were spattered with snow held on by the early melt and then re-freeze, which had happened earlier. As I drove the back roads, the frozen snow being blown from the branches by the winds that had been gusting all day long continually pelted my car. After driving in circles for a couple of hours I decided to return home down River Road. Passing the Buskirk’s Bridge I suddenly felt a pull within me to go up Stage Road.

Approaching the avenue of pines along Stage Road it was obvious things were different there than everywhere else I had ventured that day. It was so quiet. Not one breeze seemed to have yet escaped Mother Nature’s lips. The trees were coated with thick, heavy snow. Branches bowed down gracefully from on high like elegantly powdered-wigged and finely garbed ladies and gentlemen of the court dancing together, yet apart, in 17th century France. I was caught in the mystery and aloneness of it all. It was sunset, making the atmosphere all the more close and intimate. If it were not for the sudden arising of the winds I probably would have stayed under those pines until nightfall but the wind came out of nowhere and began to blow the snow off of the trees in a torrent of whiteness filled with large chunks of ice. It was almost as though the road had been waiting for me to come and photograph it, holding it’s breath least it lose any of it’s beauty, and then, when I had finally seen it, photographed it, it could finally give way and behave naturally, getting on with it’s cycle.

Leaving the pines I drove out under a soft, pearly, blue-gray sky and found more loveliness around each curve in the road. Sumac’s gracefully highlighted against that sky, the mountains of Cambridge clear and dark against the luminescent sky on the horizon line of the road as I came down the hill. The night was beginning to close in quickly around me yet the day was still left enough to kiss light onto the landscape for me for a few more photos.

Reaching the bottom of Stage Road I had to turn up Turnpike Road toward home, leaving the light behind me as it caressed Cambridge a sweet good night. -June Mohan

Photos: (Copyright Mohan 2007) To contact the artist, please send email to:

Wednesday, April 11, 2007


Village of Cambridge, NY Budget Vote Tonight!

The regular Wednesday meeting of the Board of Trustees will meet today, April 11, 2007 at 7:00 PM in the Municipal Office behind the Fire Station. The public is encouraged to attend.

This will be the last chance for the public to voice their opinion on the Village budget.

Anyone wishing to review the budget may read a copy at the Village Office, 56 N. Park Street.

Tuesday, April 10, 2007

Jack's Outback Rendezvous # 37 Jack's Outback Rendezvous # 37

Candle Holder
Jack got a hold of a couple of copper wash basins that were pretty much destroyed but he noticed the magnificent patina on the bottom of the pieces and decided to salvage them. He then had a friend, who is a blacksmith, fashion sconces on them to make a pair of lovely candleholders. The copper bottoms (now the wall plates) are 19th century, the candleholder parts are brand new.

Jack lets some light shine on antiques!
Go there! Visit Jack’s Outback, 30 West Main Street, Cambridge, NY 518-677-2929.

Monday, April 09, 2007

Windows on our Worlds Windows on our Worlds

It is great to get a glimpse of your world from CambridgeBuzz readers windows all over the country. It really shows how such a small community like Cambridge has an impact on peoples lives everywhere. So look out your window, snap a picture and send a jpeg's of your view to with date, time and general location that you took the picture and I will post it ASAP.
Cambridge, NY

Sunday, April 08, 2007

Happy Easter Happy Easter

Photo by John Carlson, c2007

Somehow, "I'm dreamin of a white Easter'" just doesn't sound right!

The staff at CambridgeBuzz sends all our readers many blessings for a Happy Easter.


Mario Schifano (1934-1998): Paintings 1960-1966
by Donald Goddard

Mario Schifano stopped going to school at the age of thirteen, worked as a day laborer and studied painting, completed his military service, then became an assistant to his father in restoration at the Etruscan Museum of Valle Giulia in Rome. In the late 1950s he gave up his job as a restorer to be an artist, a painter, which meant, for him, “abandoning the paradise of childhood and deliberately opting for woe.” At first, he poured cement onto canvas and scratched into it. Beginning in 1960, he painted enamels on rectangles of wrapping paper, sometimes pasting the rectangles on canvas. Already these latter were called “Monocromi,” in the tradition that had begun in the 1910s with Kazimir Malevich in Russia and was practiced in the 1950s and ‘60s, by Yves Klein, Robert Rauschenberg, Robert Ryman, and Lucio Fontana, among others.

For Schifano, the monochromes were both end and beginning. They represent the archaeological present, the tabula rasa of what is to come. The past is in the imperfect surfaces, the scratching, outlining, and dripping, the recognition that these objects will age, just as they have aged to this point after Schifano’s death and taken on a different character than they had before, just as Etruscan objects age. The present and future are in the surfaces as well, but also in the imagery, the constant iteration and celebration of the picture, the rectangle in which everything happens and will happen. Maurizio Calvesi wrote that these paintings represented “nothing containing a project for everything,” because, I think, their obvious emptiness involved a certainty about the defined, painted space in which everything could happen, and in which everything was already beginning to happen in terms of the movement of paint, the extraordinary emulsification of the surface.

Yves Klein had a similar beginning in his monochromes, color as a singular place in which form (life) emerges, but without Schifano’s constant grappling with and recognition of the past. It is startling to encounter in Qualcos’ altro (“What Else”) of 1962, a 6 ½-by-7 ½ painting covered with a multitude of gray paint strokes through which the white paper is seen, four vertical cuts that divide the surface precisely evenly and reveal, on close inspection, the weave of the canvas, like the nut within the shell, or the articulation of muscle beneath the skin. It is the counterpoint to Fontana’s slashes in space.

Nineteen sixty-two is also the year in which recognizable images began to enter the picture from outside. Two paintings called Particolare di esterno (“Detail of exterior”?), which would seem to indicate that what is outside the picture cannot be prevented from entering the picture, each has an unnamable (for me), vaguely sexual outlined jarlike shape next the numeral 5, one image in black, one in white. Later there is an Esso sign, a car, the distinctive lettering of a Coca Cola label or advertisement. The drawing of the car seems almost to have forced its way into the horizontal rectangle with rounded corners that resembles a television screen in the lower part of the canvas.

The Coca Cola script in Ai pittore di insegne (“To the sign painters”) of 1964 is insistent, repeated in overlaid outlines, and accompanied by animated color bars close to the six primary and secondary colors plus black, gray, and white. The measurements of 100 centimeters in the upper half and 73 centimeters in the lower half seem to indicate that this is a job that needs to be completed. It is a project, something real to be done, not just a painting—something between beginning and end imposing itself on the world, structuring what and how we see. There is, in other words, a built-in ambiguity—what we see and experience is not our choice, though as it pushes against us, we push back to make of it what we want.

Landscapes are even less certain. They contain amorphous shapes of cloud, sky, earth, and sea, beyond our being, beyond our control. In Paesaggio Anemico (“Anemic landscape”) of 1964 the title is written in capital letters below the round-cornered square within which the landscape appears, as though to make sure we know what we are looking at. There is a simply billowing white cloud, a blue sky, a horizon line, and three horizontal strips of white, green, and brown. The landscape could be nothing but anemic as representative of visual reality. And yet it is somehow magnificent, or manifests magnificence. The painting mediates the expanse from there to here, from distance to presence. The white cloud drips into the blue sky and vice-versa, the blue drips into the white strip, the white into the green, green into brown, and ultimately brown into the empty canvas below. What we see spills into our own space; the landscape becomes us.

Another Paesaggio anemico, of 1965, introduces shapes of colored Plexiglas, as do many of Schifano’s works of this time—yellow for the land at the bottom, like a beach, white and dark blue for the clouds and sky above, delicately bolted to the canvas around their edges, in some places with slats stretched from one area to another. Again, the title appears in the landscape, block letters drawn in the painted part of the sky, and Schifano’s name also appears, written along the edge of a yellow slat in the white Plexi cloud, as though he were the cloud, a figure reclining in the sky like an ancient Roman god. The precision and uniform surfaces of the plastic cutouts give the piece a rational, structured quality, yet it is even more ineffable, in some ways, than the purely painted work. Layers of interposed transparency suggest even greater depths. Clarification is accompanied by further complication, so that while we are in closer contact with land, cloud, and sky as though from one eye to another, we are forced to realize that there is much more through and beyond their perfected closeness.

Umano non umano (“Human, non-Human”), a 95-minute film made by Schifano in 1968, ran continuously on a television monitor in the last room of the gallery. Though beyond the chronological scope of this show, the film is a powerful expression of the artist’s aesthetic and his attachment to the world. As in the paintings, the images move inexorably into and mill about in an already established screen, even more urgently focused there by the fact that the film is being shown on a TV monitor rather than a larger screen. There are scenes, among many others, of Jean-Luc Godard shooting a movie in Paris, the war in Vietnam, Mao Ze-dong at a state event in China, a massive labor demonstration in Rome, an artist talking about his work in his studio. The viewer (artist) potentially becomes the subject, and object, of everything going on in the world, and therefore somehow responsible to it, politically, socially, humanly. With television particularly, images crowd into our lives. “For Schifano,” as Miriam Gagnor put it in the book accompanying the show, “television was like a spoken presence within a private space.”

Toward the end of his life, in 1996, Schifano visited Rio de Janeiro for a project there. When their government proposed painting all the shacks of the favelas green to make them less visible, Schifano painted one of the shacks white so that it would be more visible.

The exhibition ran from January 11 through February 17, 2007 at Sperone Westwater, 415 West 13th Street, New York, NY.

Writer, Donald Goddard, lives in New York City and is the author of books on Nahum Tschacbasov, fashion photography, sound art, Harry Jackson, American painting, Alan Scarritt, and wildlife conservation.

Friday, April 06, 2007


Village of Cambridge, NY

Newly elected Mayor Dede Nash will have regular office hours on
Tuesdays and Fridays from 1:30-3:30 pm
Village Office: 56 North Park Street (on Rt. 22).

Village Trustee Meetings are held at the Fire Station on West Main Street the 1st Monday and 3rd Wednesday of each month @ 7:00 pm. The public is welcome to attend.

Village Earth Day Clean-up on April 22, 2007. For information contact Christine Hoffer.

Thursday, April 05, 2007

Photographer's Log Photographer's Log

As this past Autumn of 2006 began I was driving down Belle Road in warm, golden sunlight. Rounding the great “S” curve near it’s end a golden glow caught my eye. It was the sunlight lighting up this wild spider web like a lantern in the daytime.

In the lower right of the frame you see a “normal” spider web, woven by an everyday little spider, precise, even, a routine day’s work. But the web “lantern” seemed like a deliberate, aching work of artistic obsession.

I like to think the spider was an arachnid artist par excellence, who had experienced previous day’s sunlit radiance upon that fence and wanted to catch that light and display it with the works of his own eight little feet. That morning he got up with a design in his mind and worked feverishly all day trying to beat the coming rays of the sun until, finally, when he was finished, he was able to stand back and admire the delicate, gossamer art he’d woven to satisfy his little spider’s heart. While he rested within that golden shower of silk I was blessed to pass by and capture forever with my camera’s lens the beauty of this minute artist’s dedication and creativity.

The winds and rains long ago ravished his beautiful composition but for a few minutes one day, his work stood equally with that of all the great artists of the ages. If you look very closely perhaps you’ll see the image which I imagine Spidey wove into his silk to reflect in the sunlight that day: the profile of a baby bird looking to the left. Perhaps a duckling or chick? It doesn’t matter. My eye views this arachnid “Rorschach” with delight and I relish its tickling of my imagination.

It’s hard to take spider webs for granted any more. Now, in my travels, I find myself seeking out more web-weaving Michelangelos so I may photograph their delicately ephemeral artistic endeavors. -June Mohan

Photo: (Copyright Mohan 2006) To contact the artist, please send email to:

Windows on our Worlds Windows on our Worlds

What is the view out of your window? Email your jpg to with date, time and general location that you took the picture and I will post it ASAP. It is wonderful to see all the fun views Cambridgebuzz readers have on our world! So... grab your digital camera, point it out your window and share a slice of your life. Thanks.

"April Showers takes on new meaning," Cambridge, NY 4-5-07

Wednesday, April 04, 2007

Not to Miss - Giorgi Latsabidze Not to Miss - Giorgi Latsabidze

One of the many truly amazing things about our slice of life here in the Cambridge area are the many opportunities we have available to experience world-class art, music and theater. Here is a "heads up" on one not to be missed.

“When I first heard Giorgi Latsabidze play the piano I was astounded on so many levels, mainly being the absolute connection his playing made to my basic humanness. He reached me so deeply and so emotionally by playing a Chopin etude (with which I was completely familiar) in a way that allowed me to feel that I was hearing it for the very first time. His technique is brilliant at the very least, but his interpretation of the classics, is for me, beyond measure. In addition, the utter joy of his passion for the piano allows him to bring a fresh and extraordinarily contemporary experience to his audience.”

“Unlike so many hugely renowned classical pianists, his presence and intelligence are given to his audience with grace and simplicity. He truly plays directly to you, sharing his own deep gifts and joy of playing for you. All of the qualities surrounding his playing are superb—and he is as well a remarkable composer who just completed scoring his first film in the United States and recently won the Italian “oscar” for best film score in Italy — all this at age 28!

He will be playing soon right here in your neighborhood. Take this opportunity and let Giorgi lift you up into the beautiful blue spring sky—and if you do, there will not be a moments regret—only sheer joy!” -Wayne Adams

A benefit concert for Burr & Burton Academy Performing Arts featuring pianist Giorgi Latsabidze, will be presented on May 7, 2007, 7:00PM at the First Congregational Church in Manchester VT. The program will include the Mozart Piano Sonata in D Major, the Pozdro Piano Sonata No. 2 and the Chopin Piano Sonata in b flat minor. A rising star among today’s classical pianists, Manchester is one of two stops in the United States for Mr. Latsabidze before he travels to Europe for a concert engagement.

Tickets can be purchased at the Northshire Bookstore in Manchester. For reservations or information contact Julie Freebern at 802-362-1775 ext. 231 or
Prices are $20 for adults and $5 for children. Festival seating, doors open at 6:30PM.

short biography

Giorgi Latsabidze is one of the most exciting young pianists to come out of Eastern Europe. At age 27, he is already regarded as a significant performer of his generation. Born in the Republic of Georgia, his heritage is Russian, Georgian, Polish and Armenian. Having placed in several international piano competitions, he received the gold medal in 1999 at the Nikolai Rubinstein Competition in Paris. He has concretized throughout Central and Eastern Europe. In March 2002 he performed the 24 Etudes of Chopin in a solo concert in Tbilisi to a cheering audience of more than a thousand.

Giorgi’s early education was at the W. Saradjishvili State Conservatory in Tbilisi. He won Georgian Presidential scholarships throughout his early education, his work there culminating with a master’s degree and an artist’s diploma with highest honors. Further graduate degrees were completed at the Hanover Conservatory (Germany) and the Mozarteum in Salzburg (Austria). A composer in many genres, Giorgi wrote the score for the film Waltz-Fantasy, shown at film festivals throughout Eruope and winning in Italy in the “best music” category.

Recently Giorgi has been included in the internet world-wide listing of the top 20 pianists. He has just completed his first American film score for the new independent short feature Twilight’s Grace, written, directed and produced by Jeremy Gram Weaver for Onward Entertainment in Los Angeles, shot in Panavision by the Danish cinematographer/director of photography Bo Bilstrup (in festivals world-wide in 2007).

Cambridge Diner Cambridge Diner

Under new management, The Cambridge Diner, officially opened it's doors for business at 6:00 this morning! The Diner hours are 6:00am to 2:00pm 7 days a week.

Check it out. Enjoy a traditional diner style menu with a flair!