croton blog for croton-on-hudson new york

Luvin' Croton from Shore to Shops...

December 12, 2006

Now, before we all get caught up in the often-hectic holiday season, we want to take just a minute to reflect on yet one more wonderful year in this special place we call home. Our very first issue of iluvcrtn produced a list of some of the things we luv about Croton. This original list has become a never-ending one and each year we have more to add. So much happens in this special place, it’s hard to keep up with it all. This is a great time of the year and this issue will try to capture some of the things we’ve loved adding to the list.

The last few days have been crisp, windy, sunny and clear. Elliott Way is the new place to be! The strong west winds coming across the Palisades over the river wreck havoc with the water. The white caps are beautiful in their strength as they smash against the rocky shore. This writer actually stopped along the walkway to take a picture that will be prized for years to come. A particularly beautiful sculpture had been created by driftwood stuck in the multi-colored rocks. The bright sunlight caused even the rocks to glisten and the multi-shaded water created background for a remarkable natural work of art. The majestic Hudson changes every day and offers a different kind of beauty for us to treasure every season.

Former Mayor Elliott’s vision of a river walk abutting his dream of a “village in a park” will reach fruition in the next year. The current board just approved an agreement with the County whereby the construction of the County’s proposed River walk will be joined together with the Village’s improvements to Croton Landing allowing both riverfront improvements to proceed simultaneously. The County is providing 1.750 million dollars, which includes $250,000 from the state for the River walk. The Village has also received $350,000 from the state for the improvements at Croton Landing. Croton will be home to a spectacular walk along the shores of the Hudson River, extending from the north end of Elliott Way. Senasqua Park, the Croton Yacht Club, Croton Landing and past the Beaverkill property. It will be the pride of Croton and the envy of every other Hudson River Town. The river is for everyone to enjoy and former Mayor Elliott and our village officials have made it very special indeed for Croton.

We welcome “Groovy on Grand”, a great little store with wonderful children’s clothes. It’s right in the center of town on Grand Street directly across from Holy Name of March Parish Hall.

The former building at the intersection of Grand Street and Old Post Road, formerly housing Baskets of Joy has been beautifully refurbished and now provides offices for a pediatric dentist. The new façade of the building blends beautifully into the neighborhood. Some long-time residents have told us that the building was moved about 50 years ago from Riverside Avenue to its present location to make room for the new Rt. 9 expressway.

Croton has also become home to a wonderful Computer Troubleshooter by the name of Patrick Whelan. He occupies the former Darretta Frame Shop and Art Gallery in the mini-mall at the intersection of Rts.129 and Riverside Avenue. Patrick has saved this writer from “computer disaster” several times. Welcome Patrick.

We remind all readers what a pleasure it is to shop in any of our local stores as opposed to going out of town, spending all that money on gas, fighting the huge shopping mall crowds to find a parking space and then, often having to put up with exhausted, cranky clerks who can’t wait to get home. Our Croton shopkeepers know most of us either by name or by sight and the service are always superior and personal.

Our well-established and long-time friends at Wondrous Things have a marvelous mix of unique gifts to choose from, clothes, accessories, household gifts and much, much more. Their toy department is second to none in the area. It sure beats Toys R Us for quality and interest. The owners, Donald and Scott, either have impeccable taste in their selections or very, very talented buyers. Their employees are extremely helpful and go out of their way to find the perfect gift for you. And don’t forget, shopping there includes extraordinary gift-wrapping at no extra charge! What a treat.

A visit to Trinkets jewelry store is well worth the stop. Valerie, the owner, will work with you to find the perfect piece of unusual jewelry. And if she doesn’t have just what you want she goes out of her way to find it. She also provides excellent repair service. She’s replaced many a broken necklace or bracelet clasp for this reader and is expert at replacing lost stones in treasured rings or pendants. It’s a must stop for gifts of jewelry.

A word of congratulations is always in order for the parent volunteers at Croton Harmon Education Foundation (CHEF). CHEF is now in their 7th year. Since it started it has raised Over $250,000, which it provides in grants to school projects and programs through a twice/year grant application cycle. This February, their Dine-A-Round night will be repeated due to its popularity last year where it raised over 10,000. Watch for further details

Our Village has never looked better. It’s decked out in all it’s Holiday splendor and is particularly beautiful at night. Do yourselves a favor and drive through the upper village and through our winding streets after dark and see all the wonderful displays. We are truly a proud community. Our residents seem to be taking more pride in their own surroundings and our public areas in the village look fantastic. It’s exciting to see playgrounds, parks, and public rights of way being carefully policed by the whole community and it demonstrates a real pride and caring for our home town.

More good news for those of us who are “political junkies” and who love to know what’s going on in our village. The on-demand video recording of Village Board meetings allows us the opportunity to watch village government at work by the simple click of a button from the comfort of our living rooms. This is a tremendous boon for those who may be unable to attend or watch the night of the actual meeting. This on-demand videocast means exactly that. We are now able to watch our government in action according to our personal schedules. In addition, the village website is always current and a great way to keep informed.

Crotonblog continues stronger and better than ever. Readership and contributors increase every month. More and more people, both from Croton and out of town, contribute comments and opinions for all to share. It’s yet one more place to exchange ideas on ways to improve our already good lives in Croton.

And now, “AN IMPORTANT MESSAGE FROM THIS STATION… SHOP LOCALLY.” Not only will you save precious dollars in gas, help the environment and decrease congestion, you will support and encourage a viable business community.

This is getting very long and wordy, but what else should we expect from an exciting little Village. A very special wish for a Happy Holiday season to all.

And keep on luvncrtn!

On February 1, 2007 9:28 AM, weewill said:

I couldn’t agree more with the above comment .

I’ve lived here for 50 + years and have seen small shops come and go. I’ve also seen the very best in small shops remain and prosper and supply Croton residents with fine quality shopping. Think Wonndrous Things and the Black Cow as prime examples. They are well run and responsive to their customers, employing caring and friendly personnel who listen and care about customers. They are friends and neighbors first and shop owners second. Many unpublished acts of kindness have gone unrecognized and unadvertised. These shopkeepers are very real contributors to this small, tight community.

And fortunately we have limited sites large enough to even attempt any large box store. Our recently approved Comprehensive Plan has strong and strict regulations governing the maximum square footage in any new retail establishment. It’s clear the protection of our small town, unique, quality of life so treasured in this village was omnipresent in their deliberations.

(P.S. In the interest of full disclosure and in case anyone out there doesn’t know it, The Black Cow is owned by my wonderful son, Michael.)

On January 31, 2007 5:20 PM, judatheist said:

Hey, I adore and love Croton and I wish I could open a gourmet cheese shop like the one I schlep to every day in Larchmont (Auray Cheese Shop) - but I guess it’s impossible to know if something like that would work in our town. I guess that’s why it’s so risky for small merchants to open anything at all… it could mean personal financial suicide.

When I bought my shop in Larchmont I knew there was a customer base for gourmet cheese… how can anybody make such a determination in their own town?

Especially since we are kind of off the beaten path as far as most of Westchester is concerned… there aren’t too many roads that lead to us, etc.

I want Croton to retain what is becoming extraordinarily rare in the U.S. - that is, character! I love this place because there aren’t all of those chain stores that have Wal-Mart-ized America.

I’m always worried that landlords - who are largely absentee - can just let in whatever they want into our town. It’s even going on in Larchmont - they drive up rents to get super-rich and then the only places that can afford to go in are the mega-chains - so it’s becoming banks, starbucks, and real estate offices.

I really pray that Croton doesn’t ever, ever get this way.

Believe me - if I had the capital and a partner I’d be willing to give it a shot in Croton.

On January 3, 2007 6:24 AM, sacklabs said:

The “Shop Locally” link is rather sad….if shop locally means CVS, GNC, Blockbuster, Shoprite and A&P. While Crotonites may work at these national chains, I don’t exactly feel that shopping there is really supporting local business.

On December 19, 2006 2:20 PM, bojangles said:

Right you are Dors. And I love the way MGTD reported it … not directly accusing but wishing a Merry Christmas and a hope that next year that person will be in a position to pay for their trees. That’s a most gentle and kind way to let them know what they did was not unnoticed but with the hope that whoever it was will mend his ways by next year. That’s the Croton way and why so many of us choose to live here.

Merry Christmas, Joyeau Noel,Happy Hannukah and Felice Navidas.(Since these are all the languages I can attempt, please believe that the only way we’ll ever achieve peace in the Middle East and the world, is to include every person, place and nation in our wishes for a Happy Holiday!

On December 19, 2006 12:48 PM, dors said:

What a shame 30+ trees were stolen from the Lions club. I hope the police make regular passes by the lot next year to deter a repeat. Maybe even park their car if they’re on a coffee break and watch over the lot to grab the grinches. How can a stolen Christmas tree feel like home?

On December 13, 2006 7:49 AM, MGTD said:

Even the potholes are being filled so yes, there is a Santa Claus, thank you village employees.

Thanks to all who purchased a Christmas tree from the Lions Club tree lot at Shoprite in what is approximately our 61st year for this event and thanks to Shoprite for providing the space. To those who helped themselves in the dark of the night to a tree without paying (30 or so) Merry Christmas and we hope that next year you will be able to pay for your tree.

Finally, I hope that the owner of the “Tyvek” house on the Grand St. hill will be able to finish the siding shortly and alleviate what has become an eyesore.

On December 13, 2006 7:11 AM, al-asr said:

Also to be much appreciated are the clean streets, thanks to the conscientous efforts of the Department of Public Works and their leaf removal team! They make what seems a daunting task a Mary Poppins ‘snap of the finger’.

On December 12, 2006 4:41 PM, weewill said:

Sorry … the address for Patrick Whelan, our new computer troubleshooter is 383 South Riverside Ave. in the building housing Village and Country Real Estate.

At the intersection of 129 and Riverside Avenue the store (The old Daretta Frame and Art Gallery) in the mini-mall is now occupied by an authorized Microsoft web site developer.

Welcome to both our new neighbors!


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