Helicopter Medevac Transports One to Westchester

Vail’s Gate FD responded to Kristie Babcock Memorial Park for a helicopter stand-by on July 21. Firefighters set up a landing zone for incoming Medevac. New Windsor EMS transported subject to the park, where once subject was stabilized, was transported to waiting Medevac. New Windsor Police were at the scene. Medevac lifted off on its way to Westchester Medical Center. The subject suffered an undisclosed medical event and was accompanied by family members. (Photos by Bob McCormick)

Catholic Daughters Award 2021 Scholarships

Caption 1 – Wontz Scholarship recipient Melissa Vermette.  Those pictured from left to right are Diane Meore, Regent of Court St. Ann, Mother of Mary 2419; George Wontz, donor of this scholarship; Melissa Vermette, and Lynn Eismont, co- chair of the court scholarship committee. 

Caption 2 – Recipient of the Court Scholarship,  MaryKate Murphy,  granddaughter of member Mary Ann Hogan.  Those pictured from left to right are Diane Meore,  MaryKate Murphy,  and Lynn Eismont.

County Veterans Eligible For Fresh Connect Coupon

Veterans and their immediate family members are eligible for $20 vouchers
Orange County is honoring its veterans this summer through the state’s Veterans Fresh Connect coupon program. Immediate family members are eligible for 10 Fresh Connect Checks valued at $2 each ($20 total) to use at some of the County’s farmers markets.  Many of the County’s outdoor summer farmers markets are open weekly for the growing season and most will remain open through October.

Vouchers can be picked up at the following markets:

Friday, July 23rd: Goshen Farmers’ Market
Saturday, July 24th: Port Jervis Farmers’ Market
Tuesday, July 27th: Newburgh Healthy Orange Farmers’ Market
Saturday, July 31st: Middletown Farmers’ Market
Tuesday, August 3rd: Florida Farmers’ Market

“The state’s Fresh Connect food program is a wonderful way for veterans to sample some of the great fresh food being produced by Orange County farms at reduced cost,” said Christian Farrell, the County’s Veterans Service Agency (VSA) Director.

Each market has its own individual character with unique offerings and vendors who take pride in their homegrown products.

Weekly Orange County COVID Report

This week’s COVID-19 County Report shows a rise in cases from just two weeks ago when there were fewer than 10 cases in the entire county. The 7 municipalities above have a total of 110 new cases.

32 – CITY OF MIDDLETOWN

16 – CITY OF NEWBURGH

14 – MONROE

13 – WALLKILL

13 – WARWICK

11 – NEW WINDSOR

11 – BLOOMING GROVE

Weir’s Ice Cream Recognized As July Small Business Of The Month

Assemblyman Colin Schmitt presents Michael Weir with July’s 99th Assembly District Small Business of the Month Certificate

Washingtonville – Assemblyman Colin  Schmitt has a small business of the month appreciation program designed to show recognition for a local small business in the 99th Assembly District each month. For the month of July, Assemblyman Schmitt is recognizing Weir’s Ice Cream in Salisbury Mills. Weir’s has long been a prominent family-owned business where many families and residents in the region come to enjoy treats in the summer months. Weir’s also has had a long-term commitment to an issue very near and dear to the Schmitt family, supporting dog adoption, with their last day of every season being dedicated to raising funds for the local animal shelter. 

Assemblyman Colin J. Schmitt stated, “Weir’s and summertime are synonymous. The Weir family has been providing family memories and awesome ice cream and treats for our community for over six decades. They also strongly support dogs and pet adoption, dedicating their last day of the season every year to support the Humane Society of Blooming Grove. This July I am happy to recognize Weir’s and the Weir family for everything they do for our community.”

Michael Weir of Weir’s Ice Cream stated, “We are humbled and honored to have been presented with this official recognition as Assemblyman Colin Schmitt’s small business of the month. Our family has been operating this business for more than 60 years and we could not be prouder to have the opportunity to serve such an exceptional community. Thank you Assemblyman Schmitt for this honor and for anyone looking for a place to cool down this summer, come by Weir’s!

New Structure to be Built at Site of Betty’s Country Kitchen

The Village of Washingtonville’s famed restaurant and gathering place, “Betty’s Country Kitchen” has been a favorite of locals for years.  After a fire rendered it severely damaged,   residents were hoping that as an “historic” building it would be able to be restored and resume its place as the village’s favorite place to meet and eat.  But there was too much damage, and in fact it is a lengthy and complex technical process to get state accreditation as historic, and this building did not actually qualify.  But it certainly has many memories for its longtime owner, Kevin Radday, his family, and the villagers who love it.  During the past decade as a favorite eatery it won an Empire State Award as well as several Best Restaurant in the Hudson Valley placements.  Part of the appeal its that Betty’s sits across from the Village’s Veterans Square Park, where many official activities, especially honoring first responders regularly occur.

While the building is planned for demolition it will likely become a bagel specialty shop, and will have other areas of the building leased, but it will remain a popular place to meet and eat. Stay tuned, we will keep our readers informed about when the new face of Betty’s will be coming

Donat Faces $5M Sexual Harrassment Suit

Former Newburgh City Manager, Joe Donat, is facing a $5M sexual harrassement lawsuit by 3 employees of the City, including his former Executive Assistant, Naomi Fey.  She is charging that numerous text messages were sent to her by him and included sexual  inuendos.   After she complained to Human Resources, she said he began aggressively criticizing her work in retribution.  Fey has moved to  a job in Mill Creek,  in the State of Washington, where former City Manager Michael Ciaravino moved  and became their City Manager after quitting his Newburgh job several years ago due to family matters.  Ciaravino, who had been City Manager for five years was praised by the Environmental Protection Agency for his work on Newburgh’s water contamination issues.

Chabad Women’s Circle Enjoys a Summer Evening of Creativity

Women from across Orange County gathered for a summer evening of creativity with Chabad’s Jewish Women’s Circle, led by Chana Burston. Participants learned the unique art of “Glass Etching” with local artist and community member Heidi Leonard of Washingtonville.  Everyone enjoyed choosing personalized designs to create exquisite glass Challah Boards and Shabbat Candle Drip trays. The candle-lit evening was held at Rosmarin’s Pavilion in Monroe. The evening highlight included scrumptious summer salads and desserts, Torah insights with Chana Burston and fine kosher wines.  Chabad of Orange County wishes to thank Heidi Leonard for the wonderful workshop and Scott and Stacey Rosmarin for hosting the event. For more information on Chabad’s Jewish Women’s Circle, call 845-662-6604.

Photo 1  (L to R) Becky Benezra of Monroe, Sarah Wallach of Middletown and Chana Burston of Monroe enjoy a summer evening at Chabad’s Jewish Women’s

Photo 2  Lizzie Deskin, of Harriman, joined her mother Marina at Chabad’s Jewish Women’s Circle.  She holds the glass challah board she is learning to etch.

Beer World Chester Like A Phoenix Will Be Back Better Than Ever

Last week we had photos of where the Beer World located in Chester had been demolished and became a vacant lot.  But CEO, Joe Wojciechowski proved the lyric to be true that “Ain’t Nothing That A Beer Can’t Fix”. He called and said that his Beer World on Brookside Ave. will be back and in a big and beautiful new building.  Joe said “We purchased the local Bargain Beverage in 2017 from a wonderful lady, and Beer World did a quick interior face lift to serve the community and represent the beer world platform. But the configuration did not really fit our purposes to fit the flagship beer world style, so we are building a new 12,000 sq. ft. store.  It will carry thousands of craft beers, as well as domestic, international, hard cider, hard seltzers, kombucha, non-alcoholic and other styles.  This flagship store will include growlers, the largest beer refrigeration in area, a cigar center and a newly added redemption center. “

The new building is scheduled to be open in fall/winter of 2021, and the store will be accepting applications for employment soon  joe@beerworldstore.com

Maloney Connects Veterans with Resources Presents Purple Heart

On Sunday Congressman Sean Patrick Maloney (NY-18) held a Veterans Service Fair at the Newburgh Unity Center Armory. This fair brought Veteran Service Organizations and related businesses together with local veterans to connect veterans with available resources in the Hudson Valley.  

 During the fair, Congressman Maloney presented a Purple Heart to Barbara Mattera on behalf of her father, Vincent Mattera, a Navy Service Member during World War II (WWII). Mr. Mattera was a Petty Officer Third Class in the United States Construction Battalion. The Congressman’s office contacted the Board for Correction of Naval Records to advocate for Mr. Mattera. After a long two years wait, the Board awarded him the Purple Heart.  “Vincent Mattera bravely served our country during World War II. Despite a severe injury, he never considered a Purple Heart award until a doctor’s visit uncovered shrapnel that had been unknowingly affecting his arm strength,” said Rep. Maloney. “While it never should have taken Mr. Mattera decades to receive this distinction, I am honored that I was able to present his family with the Purple Heart on his behalf. Serving our veterans is one of the most important and rewarding parts of my job, and I hope this has inspired veterans in the Hudson Valley who need a hand to give my office a call. We’re here to help.” Mr. Mattera was drafted into the U.S. Navy for WWII in 1944. He was assigned to the Seabees Construction Battalion in the Pacific Theater of Operations. He ran bulldozers, road graders, and shovels due to his prior experience with heavy equipment. Specifically, he helped construct runways for the Army Air Force Bases. While in Guam, Mr. Mattera was working on a bulldozer when a Japanese mortar barrage started and hot metal shrapnel from a nearby explosion hit him in the back. Although he was initially cleared by a Navy nurse, he later discovered that the instance caused long-term damage to his left arm. Mr. Mattera passed away at the age of 93, on Sunday, March 7, 2021 – one week before his 94th birthday. He is survived by three children, six grandchildren, soon-to-be three great-grandchildren, and his life partner, Marilyn Torrieri. 

“Veterans fought for and served our country, and when they return home, they should be greeted with open arms and the assistance they’ve earned,” said Rep. Maloney. “It’s our duty as a nation to keep our promises to veterans, and it’s my duty as a Member of Congress to fight for smart, commonsense reforms to make their lives better when they complete their service. Bureaucracy and red tape should not stand in the way of supporting veterans and their families.” 

Since taking office in 2013, Rep. Maloney has obtained 408 medals and awards owed to veterans for their service to their country, 12 of which are Purple Hearts and nine of which are Bronze Stars. His office has also assisted 2,155 veterans and military families and returned over $13 million in earned benefits from the Department of Veterans Affairs.

Representatives from the following organizations were in attendance: Middletown Vet Center, Putnam County Veterans Service Agency, National Purple Heart Hall of Honor, Dutchess County Division of Veterans Services, American Legion 1420, Hudson River Housing’s VetZero Services for Veterans program, City of Newburgh Veterans Mentor Program, Orange County Vet to Vet, and dozens more.

Photos by Bob McCormick..more photos in this week’s issue of the Orange County Post-Sentinel