Honey Galore, No Stings Attached: Catskills Bee Fest Beckons

 

This much is true: honey is good for you. It’s rich in antioxidants (especially buckwheat honey), it’s beneficial to the skin, and it can lower triglycerides which is healthy for the heart. Oh, and it tastes great slathered on toast or in a pot of thick Greek yoghurt. But as everyone knows, bees are in trouble, and need our help.

A rise in the popularity of beekeeping has been welcome news for our most beloved pollinator, but keeping hives in the city has drawbacks: a study of honey harvested from urban bees in Vancouver showed trace elements of heavy metals, including cadmium, copper, lead, arsenic and zinc. Meanwhile, in a recent story in The New York Times, a Cornell University professor, Scott McArt, specializing in pollination, told of a study of Manhattan bees communicating to their fellow pollinators that the best pollen could be found not in the flower troughs and parks of New York, but across the Hudson River in New Jersey’s meadows.

We recommend that humans follow the instincts of the bees and cross the river, and then keep going through New Jersey, and all the way up the Delaware Valley to Narrowsburg, the beekeeping capital of New York – which hosts its 4th annual Honey Bee Fest on Saturday, September 22. With the region’s abundant forest canopy, apple orchards, and rich tradition in organic farming, plus the diverse riverside flora, there’s little risk of accidentally covering your English muffins with pesticides or heavy metals when you indulge in the local honey.

The one-day festival take place in the heart of this beautiful river town that has emerged as a favorite destination for New Yorkers, thanks to its location on the Delaware River, several excellent restaurants, boutique homeware stores, and specialist shops including Narrowsburg Proper, a food emporium that sources regional and international gourmet products. It’s also owned by Joan Santo, the creator of Honey Bee Fest.

With a new luxury bus service to Narrowsburg, operated by Catskill Carriage (departing NYC at 4pm on Fridays; tickets $55 each way if booked five days ahead), and plenty of Air BnB options, why not make a weekend of it? In addition to a street fair on Main Street featuring honey vendors, mead tastings, beekeeping classes and cooking demos, there will a special performance by the Wallenpaupack Marching Band, dressed as bees.

With honey bees in decline, expect to hear a vibrant rendition of the Bee Gees “Stayin’ Alive,” among other numbers. And then book dinner and brunch at The Laundrette and The Heron, two Narrowsburg mainstays that could easily hold their own with the best of New York City. Honey is guaranteed to be on the menu.

The Chic New Upstate Weekend Getaway: Rivertown Lodge

Photography: Matthew Williams

With Labor Day around the corner, there are a few weekends left to properly flee the city sweat and escape to rural pastures. We recommend heading north to historic Hudson, NY and booking a night at the chic (and affordable) Rivertown Lodge.  Located on the town’s main strip, in what was originally a 1920’s movie theater, this 2-story hotel is attracting five borough dwellers and international Instagram photo seekers alike.

The idea of this hotel was to serve something like a public ‘living room’ for Hudson. The lobby includes both vintage and custom pieces all with a Brooklyn Makers spirit. The mini retail concept shop features goods from local artisans and a built in kitchen cultivates the communal vibe over a stellar breakfast bar and Tandem Coffee.

Rivertown Lodge Lobby 3 : Photo Credit: Matthew Williams

Located adjacent to the lobby is the bar which has an atmosphere of modern maker meets traditional tavern. The hand-crafted cocktail program is designed by award winning mixologists Natasha David and Jeremy Oerter.

rivertown-lodge-hudson-workstead-remodelista-2

The room design is spot on for minimalist lovers. Custom beds by Workstead are crafted from turned cherry posts and layered with embroidered blankets. Additional furnishings include tables created by Sawkille in nearby Rhinebeck, NY, vintage wicker side chairs, upholstered reading chairs and lighting designed by Workstead specifically for the hotel. Bathrooms include raw brass fixtures, muted green and blue shower tile, custom-designed shelving and mirrors by craftsman from Brooklyn to Hudson.

Rivertown Lodge Bridal Suite 2 : Photo Credit: Matthew Williams

For late night provisions and conversation with your fellow travelers, there is a communal porch to congregate on. And if you’re feeling anti-social and just want to hang with your person, head to the backyard where you’ll find a fully tented ping-pong table for all the privacy you need to finish summer out with a casual game of table tennis.

Upstate: Tie-Dying Without the Peace Frogs

Most people have somewhat mixed feelings on tie-dyed goods; from the Grateful Dead to summer camp, there’s no denying that the process feels patently dated. And I would have wholeheartedly agreed with you had I not seen the beautiful hand-dyed goods coming from Upstate, a Brooklyn-based trio using a traditional Japanese technique of dying called shibori. Each piece is one-of-a-kind and the line includes handkerchiefs, scarves, vests, and ponchos in a variety of patterns and silks.

Find your local seller here, or shop the site! Let us never mention the dancing bears again.

New Projects From Rodarte & Bodkin

LA-based Rodarte and Brooklyn’s own Bodkin are both expanding their labels this week. First up, Rodarte is going for round three in a collaboration with the unstoppable boutique-cum-brand Opening Ceremony. To hit stores this spring, Rodarte and Opening Ceremony are partnering up for a collection that “will include women’s wear, shoes, handbags, eyewear, and hosiery as well as men’s wear,” and which will be stocked at OC’s three international stores as well as at a sprinkling of other retailers, says Women’s Wear Daily. (Rodarte’s previous two collabs with OC were for a series of men’s knit sweaters and a line of Breathless-inspired tees.)

Meanwhile, although her line is based far from the beach, Eviana Hartman’s ecologically friendly line, Bodkin, will include swimwear come spring. “For now, the swimwear line features only two styles – the two-piece ‘Bodkini’ and the one-piece twister suit (twisting and knotting is also featured throughout the lively spring/summer clothing collection),” says The Moment. Hartman got the idea for the swimwear after an unfruitful search for a bathing suit prior to a surfing trip to Costa Rica.

If you’re looking for a similarly covetable beach or poolside item post-thaw, check out fellow Brooklynites Upstate, whose hand-dyed sarong boasts equally urban-whimsical appeal.