Journalist and author Anthony Musso discusses his fourth published book, which is filled with detailed research that will motivate people to seek more information about local structures that they pass every day without realizing their historical significance. Featuring 55 sites, and not necessarily buildings, the book details not only the history but the stories, many of them personal to past owners, behind the sites. Facts abound in the interview. For example, the Borden Factory in Wassaic supplied the army with milk for the entire Revolutionary War, and Matthew Vassar made his money in a company brewing beer before founding Vassar College. Most sites are free and make for wonderful visits with the family.
What is the current condition of the Hudson River and how will it affect you? Dr. David Strayer, Freshwater Ecologist at the Cary Institute of Ecosystem Studies in Millbrook, New York and author of The Hudson River Primer – The Ecology of an Iconic River, discusses the positive effects of the federal Clean Water Act and other government regulations. Together these make Hudson much cleaner today than years ago, with most of the Hudson today now safe for swimming. However, Hudson River fish are still contaminated with chemical compounds (PCBs), limiting food fish to those that spend most of their lives at sea. Furthermore, alien species, often carried on ships entering the Hudson River from foreign lands, disrupt the Hudson’s ecosystem. Dr. Strayer also discusses future Hudson Valley prospects in the face of climate change, such as the effect of sea level rises on the Hudson River.
Dana Gavin, Director for the Center of Prevention of Child Abuse in Dutchess County, shares the latest information and statistics about child abuse that are at times surprising. Ms. Gavin began her career with the Center as a volunteer several years ago. Today, involved heavily in Public Relations, she speaks to organizations about the Center’s many programs that teach children and adults important ways to prevent child abuse. These include educating children in school systems in an age-appropriate Puppet People program and providing families with contacts that help them stop an abuse before it starts. Ms. Gavin explains some factors contributing to an increase in child abuse since 2005, such as the economy that places stress on parents and a rise in reporting abuse cases by those who suspect abuse, such as teachers, coaches, and doctors.
The Center for the Prevention of Child Abuse
Dutchess Prevention Center Hotline: 845 454-0595
Address of Center: 249 Hooker Ave., Poughkeepsie, NY
Catherine Forbes, Dutchess County SPCA Director of Development, discusses the no-kill Hyde Park shelter with a 141-year history of providing shelter and services for unwanted, abused, abandoned, or neglected animals. SPCA Adoption Counselors are trained to match families with pets, now called “companion animals.” Using a rescued puppy as an example, Ms. Forbes describes the medical attention veterinarians provide that finally allows a rescued companion to live a happy life in a good home. She offers many suggestions for protecting pets, such as a microchip (small as a grain of rice) injected under the skin for easy identification. The Hyde Park’s yearly Annual Petwalk, a unique and well-known county fair for dogs now in its 18th year, includes activities such as competitions in catch-a-ball, racing, tail wagging, singing, speaking, begging, tricks, and so forth, as well as unusual activities like “paw reading.”