Entertainment

Meet Laura Elmendorf


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The Amsterdam Municipal Golf Course has been local news for the past few months. A new Common Council with a supermajority vote and a Mayor used to getting her own way have stalled contracts for both the golf pro and the concessionaire at MUNI.

Laura Elmendorf is the concessionaire without a contract who has successfully run the restaurant and bar at the golf course.  Still negotiating her contract, Laura is busy planning for this year’s events.  Although the concession used to be open on weekends during the winter, this year it is closed because a contract was never negotiated or signed last year.

As a board member of the Amsterdam Waterfront Foundation, this blogger had the opportunity to meet and talk with Laura while planning a fundraiser to be held at MUNI in June. Every year the Foundation is tasked with raising money, organizing and presenting Riverlink Concerts to the public free of charge. Laura is very pleasant, knowledgeable and personable. She seems much wiser than her years. My visit to MUNI was to get a better idea of the layout and space. The AWF fundraiser will be announced as soon as we have a firm commitment, that being easier said then done.  Laura was ready with menu choices, reasonable prices and suggestions. The venue was larger than I imagined and the views were gorgeous, even in the winter!

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I sincerely hope the responsible parties take care of these contracts soon before scheduling opportunities are lost.

Categories: Amsterdam, Business, Celebration, Entertainment, Outdoors, Photography, Politics, Riverlink Park | Tags: , , , , , ,

WPHO 2013 Holiday Celebration


The World Peace and Health Organization presented their 2013 Holiday Celebration at the Goddess of Mercy Temple on 58 Grove Street in Amsterdam, New York on Saturday afternoon. It was a celebration of the Winter Solstice and Christmas bending and blending cultural barriers. There was a large representation from our local Native American tribes who shared their cultural traditions along with drumming and flute music. A local duo played their original metal composition on guitar and drums and a traditional Chinese song was sung in English by a Chinese native and in Chinese by an American. The Chinese Buddhists presented both song and a variety of costumed dance. Food and refreshments were served. It was a very colorful, festive celebration of the end of 2013.

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Categories: Amsterdam, Celebration, Entertainment, Equality, History, Music, WPHO | Tags: , , , , , , ,

Tropic Rhythm


The Albany based Latin-American band Tropic Rhythm closed out the 2013 Riverlink Park Concert Series with a repertoire of Boleros, Merengues, Salsa, Rock and Roll, Oldies (50’s and 60’s), Motown, R&B and Jazz.

The rain did come down as soon as the band set up their equipment under the bandshell saturday evening, but the storm blew over and the sun peaked through the clouds as the concert began. Although the rain and Memorial Day weekend may have kept the regular Riverlink Concert crowd away, those that did attend were in for a real treat. Tropic Rhythm is composed of Eduardo Nieves/Lead Guitar, Joseph Carrick/Rhythm Guitar, Dave Andrews/Bass Guitar, Roberto Rodriguez/Congas-Bongos-Percussion, Manny Grau/Timbales-Congas-Percussion and Dashira Cortes/Lead Vocals. Last night we had Leo in for Dave on Bass and Alex on Keyboards.

The star of the show was Dashira who has an amazing voice with a huge range. Whether a Spanish ballad, a current pop song or a 50′s song, Dashira can sing it, hitting all those hard to reach high notes with ease. I must say she is the most talented vocalist that performed at Riverlink Park this year by far! I did record a few videos of last night’s performance that I will post as soon as I get them processed. For now I have these images from our last concert of the season.

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Categories: Amsterdam, Entertainment, Music, Outdoors, Riverlink Park | Tags: , , , , ,

The Chronicles


Voted Metroland’s Best Jazz Band for 2013, the Chronicles entertained at the Greater Amsterdam Riverlink Park last night. Daniel Lawson, Jeff Nania, Tyrone Hartzog, Bryan Brundige, Andrae Surgick and Justin Henricks make up the Chronicles, whose soulful-jazz and syncopated rhythms joined the old with the new for a refreshing change in musical style.

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Categories: Amsterdam, Entertainment, Music, Outdoors, Riverlink Park | Tags: , , , ,

Berkshire Bateria


Saturday evening’s Riverlink Park Concert was performed by the Berkshire Bateria .  Their drum line,  Samba and Bossa Nova tunes entertained and engaged the concertgoers. Performing with the group was Amsterdam’s own Fabiola Dayian.

The performers were pleasantly surprised with the beauty of our Greater Amsterdam Riverlink Park as they drummed along the Mohawk.

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Categories: Amsterdam, Entertainment, Music, Outdoors, Riverlink Park | Tags: , , , ,

Skeeter Creek


The Greater Amsterdam Riverlink Park experienced a record-breaking crowd of Skeeter Creek fans as the modern country band performed Saturday evening. With an estimate of over 600 people in attendance, remarks like, wow, unbelievable, amazing and fantastic were echoed in the crowd.

The local country band consisting of Joe Kulewicz – lead guitar/vocals, Dave Ahl – lead vocals, Dean Haskin – drums, Dominic Paratore – keyboards/vocals, Rikk Anderson – steel guitar/vocals, Renee Lussier – vocals and Juan Lopez – bass/vocals is just soaring in popularity with a fan base that has quadrupled since last season. Their performance last night of popular country songs and upbeat tempos drew large numbers of people to the dance floor. The high-energy crowd was on their feet moving and singing to the popular tunes while trying to capture images of their favorite band member on portable electronic devices.

The Grove Street Photographer covered the 2012 Skeeter Creek event at Riverlink Park and was able to get some good photos. This year the large number of attendees hindered any hopes of a video but the following images recorded the event.

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Categories: Amsterdam, Entertainment, Media, Outdoors, Riverlink Park | Tags: , , , ,

Tumbleweed Highway


The 5th Annual Riverlink Jamboree took place Saturday, August 3, 2013, at Amsterdam’s Riverlink Park. Three bands performed throughout the evening and this blog will present photos from each performance in separate blog entries.

The third band performing at Riverlink Jamboree was Tumbleweed Highway. A Tumbleweed Highway experience is one that includes Cowboys, Hippies and Folkies. Their shows are known for extended Jams, Zydeco Grooves, Soulful Ballads and Upbeat Honky Tonk Tunes.

“It’s about getting our music in to everyone’s hand that we can, and independently, being on the road is the only way to do It.” says Lead Singer/Guitarist Nate Gross.

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Categories: Amsterdam, Entertainment, Music, Outdoors, Riverlink Park | Tags: , ,

The Nellies


The 5th Annual Riverlink Jamboree took place Saturday, August 3, 2013, at Amsterdam’s Riverlink Park. Three bands performed throughout the evening and this blog will present photos from each performance in separate blog entries.

The second band performing at the Riverlink Jamboree are the Nellies an Albany, NY based, rootsy, alt-country, Americana band. The band is driven by core singer-songwriter duo, Karen Ann Gilpin (acoustic guitar/banjo) and Peggy Lecuyer (mandolin/harmonica) who both contribute driving rhythms and beautiful two-part harmonies to their songs. They are joined by Gene Lemme who keeps The Nellies in line on the upright bass.  Joining them for Jamboree is Kevin Maul on Beard guitar and Mark Frederick on fiddle.

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Categories: Amsterdam, Entertainment, Music, Outdoors, Riverlink Park | Tags: , ,

The Bear Bones Project


The 5th Annual Riverlink Jamboree took place Saturday, August 3, 2013, at Amsterdam’s Riverlink Park. Three bands performed throughout the evening and this blog will present photos from each performance in separate blog entries.

First up is the Bear Bones Project, purveyors of fine acoustic and electric jam rock with Sandy Bones, Bill Bones, Eric Bones, Pete Bones and Carey Bones.

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Categories: Amsterdam, Entertainment, Music, Outdoors, Riverlink Park | Tags: , ,

Betty and the Baby Boomers


This is Folk Music at its best! Betty and the Baby Boomers delivered at Amsterdam’s Riverlink Park on Saturday evening. This Hudson Valley group of musicians/environmental educators have been perfecting harmonies and delivering their message of peace and ecology for over 25 years. Betty Boomer, Steve Stanne, Jean Valla-McAvoy, Paul Rubeo and Robert Bard brought a repertoire of classic Folk songs, river songs and some original material.

This blogger is a fan of the Boomers first album I’ll Always Sing and the group performed a few songs from that album including Jean’s beautiful rendition of Caledonia that brings tears to my eyes. A bit of local history, the song Bright Mohawk Valley performed by the group was written right here and adopted by many other places. The song appears in sheet music, titled In the Bright Mohawk Valley, printed in New York in 1896 with James J. Kerrigan as the writer. It later became popular as Red River Valley.

Near the end of their second set the Boomers expertly performed Pete Seeger’s classic peace song Turn, Turn, Turn. For a special treat, the Boomers brought along Lynn Saoirse, a harpist from Connemara in County Galway, who not only played a song with the band but also played duets with both Stanne and McEvoy.

It was great seeing old friends that I had not talked with for over 20 years. The time just melts away, like it never happened.

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Categories: Amsterdam, Entertainment, Music, Outdoors | Tags: , , , , , ,

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